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Sample records for climate change response

  1. Climate change, responsibility, and justice.

    PubMed

    Jamieson, Dale

    2010-09-01

    In this paper I make the following claims. In order to see anthropogenic climate change as clearly involving moral wrongs and global injustices, we will have to revise some central concepts in these domains. Moreover, climate change threatens another value ("respect for nature") that cannot easily be taken up by concerns of global justice or moral responsibility.

  2. Geomorphic responses to climatic change

    SciTech Connect

    Bull, W.B.

    1991-01-01

    The primary focus of this book is the response of landscapes to Pleistocene and Holocene climatic changes. During the past 40 ky the global climate has varied from full-glacial to interglacial. Global temperatures decreased between 40 and 20 ka culminating in full-glacial climatic conditions at 20 ka. This resulted in a sea level decline of 130 m. Only 8 to 14 ky later the global temperature had reversed itself and the climate was the warmest of the past 120 ky. These dramatic changes in climate imposed significant controls on fluvial systems and impacted land forms and whole landscapes worldwide. Chapter 1, Conceptual Models for Changing landscapes, presents numerous concepts related to erosional and depositional processes controlling landscape development. Each of the next four chapters of the book, 2, 3, 4, and 5, examine different aspects of climatic change on fluvial systems. The conceptual models are used to analyze landscape response in four different climatic and geologic settings. In each setting the present and past climatic conditions, the climatically induced changes in vegetation and soil development, and geochronology are considered in assessing the influence of climatic changes on geomorphic processes. Chapter 2, investigates the influence of climatic change on the geomorphic processes operating in desert watersheds in the southwestern US and northern Mexico. The study sites for Chapter 3, are small desert drainage basins in the southwestern US and near the Sinai Peninsula in the Middle East. Chapter 4, investigates fill terraces in several drainage basins of the San Gabrial Mountains of the central Transverse Ranges of coastal southern California. The study site for Chapter 5 is the Charwell River watershed in the Seaward Kaikoura Range of New Zealand. Chapter 6, Difference Responses of Arid and Humid Fluvial Systems, compares the effects of changing climates in basins that range from extremely arid to humid.

  3. Climate change response framework overview: Chapter 1

    Treesearch

    Chris Swanston; Maria Janowiak; Patricia. Butler

    2012-01-01

    Managers currently face the immense challenge of anticipating the effects of climate change on forest ecosystems and then developing and applying management responses for adapting forests to future conditions. The Climate Change Response Framework (CCRF) is a highly collaborative approach to helping land managers understand the potential effects of climate change on...

  4. Mammalian Response to Cenozoic Climatic Change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Blois, Jessica L.; Hadly, Elizabeth A.

    2009-05-01

    Multiple episodes of rapid and gradual climatic changes influenced the evolution and ecology of mammalian species and communities throughout the Cenozoic. Climatic change influenced the abundance, genetic diversity, morphology, and geographic ranges of individual species. Within communities these responses interacted to catalyze immigration, speciation, and extinction. Combined they affected long-term patterns of community stability, functional turnover, biotic turnover, and diversity. Although the relative influence of climate on particular evolutionary processes is oft debated, an understanding of processes at the root of biotic change yields important insights into the complexity of mammalian response. Ultimately, all responses trace to events experienced by populations. However, many such processes emerge as patterns above the species level, where shared life history traits and evolutionary history allow us to generalize about mammalian response to climatic change. These generalizations provide the greatest power to understand and predict mammalian responses to current and future global change.

  5. Climate change: the public health response.

    PubMed

    Frumkin, Howard; Hess, Jeremy; Luber, George; Malilay, Josephine; McGeehin, Michael

    2008-03-01

    There is scientific consensus that the global climate is changing, with rising surface temperatures, melting ice and snow, rising sea levels, and increasing climate variability. These changes are expected to have substantial impacts on human health. There are known, effective public health responses for many of these impacts, but the scope, timeline, and complexity of climate change are unprecedented. We propose a public health approach to climate change, based on the essential public health services, that extends to both clinical and population health services and emphasizes the coordination of government agencies (federal, state, and local), academia, the private sector, and nongovernmental organizations.

  6. Climate Change: The Public Health Response

    PubMed Central

    Frumkin, Howard; Hess, Jeremy; Luber, George; Malilay, Josephine; McGeehin, Michael

    2008-01-01

    There is scientific consensus that the global climate is changing, with rising surface temperatures, melting ice and snow, rising sea levels, and increasing climate variability. These changes are expected to have substantial impacts on human health. There are known, effective public health responses for many of these impacts, but the scope, timeline, and complexity of climate change are unprecedented. We propose a public health approach to climate change, based on the essential public health services, that extends to both clinical and population health services and emphasizes the coordination of government agencies (federal, state, and local), academia, the private sector, and nongovernmental organizations. PMID:18235058

  7. Ecological response to global climatic change

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Malanson, G.P.; Butler, D.R.; Walsh, S. J.; Janelle, Donald G.; Warf, Barney; Hansen, Kathy

    2004-01-01

    Climate change and ecological change go hand in hand. Because we value our ecological environment, any change has the potential to be a problem. Geographers have been drawn to this challenge, and have been successful in addressing it, because the primary ecological response to climate changes in the past — the waxing and waning of the great ice sheets over the past 2 million years – was the changing geographic range of the biota. Plants and animals changed their location. Geographers have been deeply involved in documenting the changing biota of the past, and today we are called upon to help assess the possible responses to ongoing and future climatic change and, thus, their impacts. Assessing the potential responses is important for policy makers to judge the outcomes of action or inaction and also sets the stage for preparation for and mitigation of change.

  8. Urban Runoff Response due to Climate Change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Acharya, A.; Piechota, T. C.

    2009-12-01

    Climate change may produce a significant modification in the hydrological response that requires a change in overall water resources planning and management. Climate change particularly the projected change in extreme precipitation is likely to affect the runoff characteristics both regionally and temporally. The research presented here will focus on the changes in flood potential due to climate change, specifically event based storms for urban watersheds. The study site is the Flamingo-Tropicana watershed, one of the major contributors to the Las Vegas Wash in Clark County, Nevada. The output from Global Climate Models (GCMs) considers the three standard scenarios (A1B, A2, B1) for future greenhouse gas emissions. The average and maximum data derived from the entire GCM output for all scenarios will be considered. The combined climate and hydrologic modeling will follow three major steps: (1) selection of hydrological model; (2) selection of flood event and creation of climate scenarios; and (3) application of constructed scenarios to the calibrated hydrologic model. Measured flood data will be transformed to future data to represent the future climate conditions. The statistically downscaled climate projections are made available through World Climate Research Programme’s (WCRP’s) Coupled Model Intercomparison Project Phase 3 (CMIP3) multi-model dataset. The GCM output will be downscaled to simulate the real time future climate scenarios for local impact analysis. The U.S. Army Corp of Engineers ‘HEC’ software will be utilized for modeling the extreme storm event that represents the most severe historical flood event. The analysis will be carried out over future time periods that represents 2010-40, 2040-70 and 2070-2100 (mid 2030’s, 60’s and 90’s). The progressive change in runoff due to future climate trends (precipitation projections) will be used to analyze the adaptability of existing flood control facilities and further improve the design and

  9. The radiative heating response to climate change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Maycock, Amanda

    2016-04-01

    The structure and magnitude of radiative heating rates in the atmosphere can change markedly in response to climate forcings; diagnosing the causes of these changes can aid in understanding parts of the large-scale circulation response to climate change. This study separates the relative drivers of projected changes in longwave and shortwave radiative heating rates over the 21st century into contributions from radiatively active gases, such as carbon dioxide, ozone and water vapour, and from changes in atmospheric and surface temperatures. Results are shown using novel radiative diagnostics applied to timeslice experiments from the UM-UKCA chemistry-climate model; these online estimates are compared to offline radiative transfer calculations. Line-by-line calculations showing spectrally-resolved changes in heating rates due to different gases will also be presented.

  10. Canadian vegetation response to climate and projected climatic change

    SciTech Connect

    Lenihan, J.M.

    1992-01-01

    The response of Canadian vegetation to climate and climatic change was modeled at three organizational levels of the vegetation mosaic. Snowpack, degree-days, minimum temperature, soil moisture deficit, and actual evapotranspiration are components of climate that physiologically constrain distribution of dominant plant life-forms and species. The rule-based Canadian Climate-Vegetation Model (CCVM) predicts the response of vegetation formations to climate. The CCVM simulation for current climatic conditions is more accurate and detailed than those of other equilibrium models. Ecological response surfaces predict the probability of dominance for eight boreal tree species in Canada with success. Variation in the probability of dominance is related to the species' individualistic response to climatic constraints within different airmass regions. A boreal forest-type classification shows a high degree of geographic correspondence with observed forest-types. Under two doubled-CO[sub 2] climatic scenarios, CCVM predicts a reduction in arctic tundra and subarctic woodland, a northward shift in the distribution of boreal evergreen forest, and an expansion of temperate forest, boreal summergreen woodland, and two prairie formations. The response surfaces predict significant changes in species dominance under both climatic scenarios. Species exhibit an individualistic responses to climatic change. Most of the boreal forest-types derived from future probabilities of dominance are analogous to extant forest-types, but fewer types are distinguished. Geographic correspondence in the simulated boreal forest regions under both the current and projected climates provides a link between the results of the two modelling approaches. Even with constraints, the realism of the vegetation scenarios in this study are arguably the most reliable and comprehensive predictions for Canada.

  11. Climate change, climatic variation and extreme biological responses

    PubMed Central

    Brereton, Tom; Chapman, Jason W.; Dytham, Calvin; Fox, Richard; Pearce-Higgins, James W.; Roy, David B.; Hill, Jane K.; Thomas, Chris D.

    2017-01-01

    Extreme climatic events could be major drivers of biodiversity change, but it is unclear whether extreme biological changes are (i) individualistic (species- or group-specific), (ii) commonly associated with unusual climatic events and/or (iii) important determinants of long-term population trends. Using population time series for 238 widespread species (207 Lepidoptera and 31 birds) in England since 1968, we found that population ‘crashes’ (outliers in terms of species' year-to-year population changes) were 46% more frequent than population ‘explosions’. (i) Every year, at least three species experienced extreme changes in population size, and in 41 of the 44 years considered, some species experienced population crashes while others simultaneously experienced population explosions. This suggests that, even within the same broad taxonomic groups, species are exhibiting individualistic dynamics, most probably driven by their responses to different, short-term events associated with climatic variability. (ii) Six out of 44 years showed a significant excess of species experiencing extreme population changes (5 years for Lepidoptera, 1 for birds). These ‘consensus years’ were associated with climatically extreme years, consistent with a link between extreme population responses and climatic variability, although not all climatically extreme years generated excess numbers of extreme population responses. (iii) Links between extreme population changes and long-term population trends were absent in Lepidoptera and modest (but significant) in birds. We conclude that extreme biological responses are individualistic, in the sense that the extreme population changes of most species are taking place in different years, and that long-term trends of widespread species have not, to date, been dominated by these extreme changes. This article is part of the themed issue ‘Behavioural, ecological and evolutionary responses to extreme climatic events’. PMID:28483874

  12. Crop and pasture response to climate change.

    PubMed

    Tubiello, Francesco N; Soussana, Jean-François; Howden, S Mark

    2007-12-11

    We review recent research of importance to understanding crop and pasture plant species response to climate change. Topics include plant response to elevated CO(2) concentration, interactions with climate change variables and air pollutants, impacts of increased climate variability and frequency of extreme events, the role of weeds and pests, disease and animal health, issues in biodiversity, and vulnerability of soil carbon pools. We critically analyze the links between fundamental knowledge at the plant and plot level and the additional socio-economic variables that determine actual production and trade of food at regional to global scales. We conclude by making recommendations for current and future research needs, with a focus on continued and improved integration of experimental and modeling efforts.

  13. Crop and pasture response to climate change

    PubMed Central

    Tubiello, Francesco N.; Soussana, Jean-François; Howden, S. Mark

    2007-01-01

    We review recent research of importance to understanding crop and pasture plant species response to climate change. Topics include plant response to elevated CO2 concentration, interactions with climate change variables and air pollutants, impacts of increased climate variability and frequency of extreme events, the role of weeds and pests, disease and animal health, issues in biodiversity, and vulnerability of soil carbon pools. We critically analyze the links between fundamental knowledge at the plant and plot level and the additional socio-economic variables that determine actual production and trade of food at regional to global scales. We conclude by making recommendations for current and future research needs, with a focus on continued and improved integration of experimental and modeling efforts. PMID:18077401

  14. Plant developmental responses to climate change.

    PubMed

    Gray, Sharon B; Brady, Siobhan M

    2016-11-01

    Climate change is multi-faceted, and includes changing concentrations of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere, rising temperatures, changes in precipitation patterns, and increasing frequency of extreme weather events. Here, we focus on the effects of rising atmospheric CO2 concentrations, rising temperature, and drought stress and their interaction on plant developmental processes in leaves, roots, and in reproductive structures. While in some cases these responses are conserved across species, such as decreased root elongation, perturbation of root growth angle and reduced seed yield in response to drought, or an increase in root biomass in shallow soil in response to elevated CO2, most responses are variable within and between species and are dependent on developmental stage. These variable responses include species-specific thresholds that arrest development of reproductive structures, reduce root growth rate and the rate of leaf initiation and expansion in response to elevated temperature. Leaf developmental responses to elevated CO2 vary by cell type and by species. Variability also exists between C3 and C4 species in response to elevated CO2, especially in terms of growth and seed yield stimulation. At the molecular level, significantly less is understood regarding conservation and variability in molecular mechanisms underlying these traits. Abscisic acid-mediated changes in cell wall expansion likely underlie reductions in growth rate in response to drought, and changes in known regulators of flowering time likely underlie altered reproductive transitions in response to elevated temperature and CO2. Genes that underlie most other organ or tissue-level responses have largely only been identified in a single species in response to a single stress and their level of conservation is unknown. We conclude that there is a need for further research regarding the molecular mechanisms of plant developmental responses to climate change factors in general, and that this

  15. Regional climate change and national responsibilities

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hansen, James; Sato, Makiko

    2016-03-01

    Global warming over the past several decades is now large enough that regional climate change is emerging above the noise of natural variability, especially in the summer at middle latitudes and year-round at low latitudes. Despite the small magnitude of warming relative to weather fluctuations, effects of the warming already have notable social and economic impacts. Global warming of 2 °C relative to preindustrial would shift the ‘bell curve’ defining temperature anomalies a factor of three larger than observed changes since the middle of the 20th century, with highly deleterious consequences. There is striking incongruity between the global distribution of nations principally responsible for fossil fuel CO2 emissions, known to be the main cause of climate change, and the regions suffering the greatest consequences from the warming, a fact with substantial implications for global energy and climate policies.

  16. Divergence of species responses to climate change

    PubMed Central

    Fei, Songlin; Desprez, Johanna M.; Potter, Kevin M.; Jo, Insu; Knott, Jonathan A.; Oswalt, Christopher M.

    2017-01-01

    Climate change can have profound impacts on biodiversity and the sustainability of many ecosystems. Various studies have investigated the impacts of climate change, but large-scale, trait-specific impacts are less understood. We analyze abundance data over time for 86 tree species/groups across the eastern United States spanning the last three decades. We show that more tree species have experienced a westward shift (73%) than a poleward shift (62%) in their abundance, a trend that is stronger for saplings than adult trees. The observed shifts are primarily due to the changes of subpopulation abundances in the leading edges and are significantly associated with changes in moisture availability and successional processes. These spatial shifts are associated with species that have similar traits (drought tolerance, wood density, and seed weight) and evolutionary histories (most angiosperms shifted westward and most gymnosperms shifted poleward). Our results indicate that changes in moisture availability have stronger near-term impacts on vegetation dynamics than changes in temperature. The divergent responses to climate change by trait- and phylogenetic-specific groups could lead to changes in composition of forest ecosystems, putting the resilience and sustainability of various forest ecosystems in question. PMID:28560343

  17. Divergence of species responses to climate change.

    PubMed

    Fei, Songlin; Desprez, Johanna M; Potter, Kevin M; Jo, Insu; Knott, Jonathan A; Oswalt, Christopher M

    2017-05-01

    Climate change can have profound impacts on biodiversity and the sustainability of many ecosystems. Various studies have investigated the impacts of climate change, but large-scale, trait-specific impacts are less understood. We analyze abundance data over time for 86 tree species/groups across the eastern United States spanning the last three decades. We show that more tree species have experienced a westward shift (73%) than a poleward shift (62%) in their abundance, a trend that is stronger for saplings than adult trees. The observed shifts are primarily due to the changes of subpopulation abundances in the leading edges and are significantly associated with changes in moisture availability and successional processes. These spatial shifts are associated with species that have similar traits (drought tolerance, wood density, and seed weight) and evolutionary histories (most angiosperms shifted westward and most gymnosperms shifted poleward). Our results indicate that changes in moisture availability have stronger near-term impacts on vegetation dynamics than changes in temperature. The divergent responses to climate change by trait- and phylogenetic-specific groups could lead to changes in composition of forest ecosystems, putting the resilience and sustainability of various forest ecosystems in question.

  18. Climate Change: Ethics and Collective Responsibility

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Peacock, K.; Brown, M. B.; Mann, M. E.; Lewandowsky, S.

    2014-12-01

    Climate change poses grave risks for societies and people all around the earth. Though details of the risks remain uncertain, they include accelerating sea level rise and ocean acidification, regional drought, floods and heat waves, crop failures and more: dangerous changes are already occurring, while GHG emissions continue to grow, ice melts, water expands, temperature rises, and weather patterns shift. Our roles as individuals and nations in producing the emissions of GHGs responsible for this episode of climate change, and the actions that could be taken to mitigate it, raise difficult ethical questions. When we are responsible for putting others in danger, we have a duty to mitigate that danger. But our sense of responsibility is diluted here: each individual act contributes only minutely to the overall risks, and the links between individual acts and the harms they produce are complex, indirect and involve many other agents. In these circumstances, our sense of personal responsibility is diminished and uncoordinated, individual responses to the risks become ineffective. We propose a view of the ethics of climate change that begins with the tragedy of the commons: Free use of a shared, indispensable resource can lead to catastrophe as the resource is overrun, and the destruction of the commons arises from choices that are individuallyrational, if each person's choice is made independently of others'. Finally, individuals often fail to make ethical choices when the links between individual actions and their negative outcomes are obscure, when individual choices are made separately and privately, and when special interests stand to gain from actions that are generally harmful. Philosophical work in ethics has emphasized the role of ethics in enabling cooperation between individuals and coordinating group responses to problems, while recent work on social rules has modeled them as generalized forbiddings, taught and enforced by 'blocking' behaviours which

  19. Adaptation responses of crops to climate change

    SciTech Connect

    Seino, Hiroshi

    1993-12-31

    Appreciable global climatic responses to increasing levels of atmospheric CO{sub 2} and other trace gases are expected to take place over the next 50 to 80 years. Increasing atmospheric concentrations of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases are producing or will produce changes in the climate of the Earth. In particular, numerous efforts of climate modeling project very substantial increase of surface air temperature. In addition to a general warming of the atmosphere, the possibility of increased summer dryness in the continental mid-latitudes has been suggested on the basis of both historical analogues and some General Circulation Model (GCM) studies. There are three types of effect of climatic change on agriculture: (1) the physiological (direct) effect of elevated levels of atmospheric CO{sub 2} on crop plants and weeds, (2) the effect of changes in parameters of climate (e.g., temperature, precipitation, and solar radiation) on plants and animals, and (3) the effects of climate-related rises in sea-level on land use. The direct effects of elevated CO{sub 2} are on photosynthesis and respiration and thereby on growth, and there are additional effects of increased CO{sub 2} on development, yield quality and stomatal aperture and water use. A doubling of CO{sub 2} increases the instantaneous photosynthetic rate by 30% to 100%, depending on the other environmental conditions, and reduce water requirements of plants by reducing transpiration (per unit leaf area) through reductions in stomatal aperture. A doubling of CO{sub 2} causes partial stomatal closure on both C{sub 3} and C{sub 4} plants (approximately a 40% decrease in aperture). In many experiments this results in reductions of transpiration of about 23% to 46%. However. there is considerable uncertainty over the magnitude of this in natural conditions.

  20. Sensitivity and rapidity of vegetational response to abrupt climate change.

    PubMed

    Peteet, D

    2000-02-15

    Rapid climate change characterizes numerous terrestrial sediment records during and since the last glaciation. Vegetational response is best expressed in terrestrial records near ecotones, where sensitivity to climate change is greatest, and response times are as short as decades.

  1. Sensitivity and rapidity of vegetational response to abrupt climate change

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Peteet, D.

    2000-01-01

    Rapid climate change characterizes numerous terrestrial sediment records during and since the last glaciation. Vegetational response is best expressed in terrestrial records near ecotones, where sensitivity to climate change is greatest, and response times are as short as decades.

  2. Undocumented migration in response to climate change.

    PubMed

    Nawrotzki, Raphael J; Riosmena, Fernando; Hunter, Lori M; Runfola, Daniel M

    In the face of climate change induced economic uncertainty, households may employ migration as an adaptation strategy to diversify their livelihood portfolio through remittances. However, it is unclear whether such climate migration will be documented or undocumented. In this study we combine detailed migration histories with daily temperature and precipitation information for 214 weather stations to investigate whether climate change more strongly impacts undocumented or documented migration from 68 rural Mexican municipalities to the U.S. during the years 1986-1999. We employ two measures of climate change, the warm spell duration index (WSDI) and the precipitation during extremely wet days (R99PTOT). Results from multi-level event-history models demonstrate that climate-related international migration from rural Mexico was predominantly undocumented. We conclude that programs to facilitate climate change adaptation in rural Mexico may be more effective in reducing undocumented border crossings than increased border fortification.

  3. Undocumented migration in response to climate change

    PubMed Central

    Riosmena, Fernando; Hunter, Lori M.; Runfola, Daniel M.

    2016-01-01

    In the face of climate change induced economic uncertainty, households may employ migration as an adaptation strategy to diversify their livelihood portfolio through remittances. However, it is unclear whether such climate migration will be documented or undocumented. In this study we combine detailed migration histories with daily temperature and precipitation information for 214 weather stations to investigate whether climate change more strongly impacts undocumented or documented migration from 68 rural Mexican municipalities to the U.S. during the years 1986–1999. We employ two measures of climate change, the warm spell duration index (WSDI) and the precipitation during extremely wet days (R99PTOT). Results from multi-level event-history models demonstrate that climate-related international migration from rural Mexico was predominantly undocumented. We conclude that programs to facilitate climate change adaptation in rural Mexico may be more effective in reducing undocumented border crossings than increased border fortification. PMID:27570840

  4. Divergence of species responses to climate change

    Treesearch

    Songlin Fei; Johanna M. Desprez; Kevin M. Potter; Insu Jo; Jonathan A. Knott; Christopher M. Oswalt

    2017-01-01

    Climate change can have profound impacts on biodiversity and the sustainability of many ecosystems. Various studies have investigated the impacts of climate change, but large-scale, trait-specific impactsare less understood.Weanalyze abundance data over time for 86 tree species/groups across the eastern United States spanning the last three decades. We show that more...

  5. Simulating rice response to climate change

    SciTech Connect

    Singh, U.; Padilla, J.L. |

    1995-12-31

    The response of rice (Oryza sativa L.) to elevated CO{sub 2} concentration and temperature increase was simulated using the CERES-rice model. CERES-rice belongs to the International Benchmark Sites Network for Agrotechnology Transfer (IBSNAT) family of crop and nutrient dynamics models. Long-term historical data from the International Rice Research Institute (IRRI) wetland site was used to quantify the climatic change effects. The model simulated such beneficial effects of CO{sub 2} enrichment as increased grain yields, reduced transpiration, increased water use efficiency, improved use of intercepted radiation, reduced N losses, and higher N use efficiency. The trends were reversed for all of the above parameters with increase in temperature. CERES-rice simulated these negative trends in low input rice production as well. Based on the model`s prediction, some of the negative effects of temperature increase in warmer regions of the world could be offset by use of rice varieties that are tolerant to high temperature-induced spikelet sterility, and planting varieties with longer growth duration, particularly, longer grain filling duration. With improved varieties and good management future impact of climate change could be capitalized to have positive effects on rice production. Although the model has been extensively tested, it is critical to validate it with field data from extreme temperature and CO{sub 2} level studies. 33 refs., 13 figs., 3 tabs.

  6. Responses of large mammals to climate change

    PubMed Central

    Hetem, Robyn S; Fuller, Andrea; Maloney, Shane K; Mitchell, Duncan

    2014-01-01

    Most large terrestrial mammals, including the charismatic species so important for ecotourism, do not have the luxury of rapid micro-evolution or sufficient range shifts as strategies for adjusting to climate change. The rate of climate change is too fast for genetic adaptation to occur in mammals with longevities of decades, typical of large mammals, and landscape fragmentation and population by humans too widespread to allow spontaneous range shifts of large mammals, leaving only the expression of latent phenotypic plasticity to counter effects of climate change. The expression of phenotypic plasticity includes anatomical variation within the same species, changes in phenology, and employment of intrinsic physiological and behavioral capacity that can buffer an animal against the effects of climate change. Whether that buffer will be realized is unknown, because little is known about the efficacy of the expression of plasticity, particularly for large mammals. Future research in climate change biology requires measurement of physiological characteristics of many identified free-living individual animals for long periods, probably decades, to allow us to detect whether expression of phenotypic plasticity will be sufficient to cope with climate change. PMID:27583293

  7. Responses of large mammals to climate change.

    PubMed

    Hetem, Robyn S; Fuller, Andrea; Maloney, Shane K; Mitchell, Duncan

    2014-01-01

    Most large terrestrial mammals, including the charismatic species so important for ecotourism, do not have the luxury of rapid micro-evolution or sufficient range shifts as strategies for adjusting to climate change. The rate of climate change is too fast for genetic adaptation to occur in mammals with longevities of decades, typical of large mammals, and landscape fragmentation and population by humans too widespread to allow spontaneous range shifts of large mammals, leaving only the expression of latent phenotypic plasticity to counter effects of climate change. The expression of phenotypic plasticity includes anatomical variation within the same species, changes in phenology, and employment of intrinsic physiological and behavioral capacity that can buffer an animal against the effects of climate change. Whether that buffer will be realized is unknown, because little is known about the efficacy of the expression of plasticity, particularly for large mammals. Future research in climate change biology requires measurement of physiological characteristics of many identified free-living individual animals for long periods, probably decades, to allow us to detect whether expression of phenotypic plasticity will be sufficient to cope with climate change.

  8. Understanding complex biogeographic responses to climate change

    PubMed Central

    Seabra, Rui; Wethey, David S.; Santos, António M.; Lima, Fernando P.

    2015-01-01

    Predicting the extent and direction of species’ range shifts is a major priority for scientists and resource managers. Seminal studies have fostered the notion that biological systems responding to climate change-impacted variables (e.g., temperature, precipitation) should exhibit poleward range shifts but shifts contrary to that expectation have been frequently reported. Understanding whether those shifts are indeed contrary to climate change predictions involves understanding the most basic mechanisms determining the distribution of species. We assessed the patterns of ecologically relevant temperature metrics (e.g., daily range, min, max) along the European Atlantic coast. Temperature metrics have contrasting geographical patterns and latitude or the grand mean are poor predictors for many of them. Our data suggest that unless the appropriate metrics are analysed, the impact of climate change in even a single metric of a single stressor may lead to range shifts in directions that would otherwise be classified as “contrary to prediction”. PMID:26245256

  9. AO/NAO Response to Climate Change. 1; Respective Influences of Stratospheric and Tropospheric Climate Changes

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rind, D.; Perlwitz, J.; Lonergan, P.

    2005-01-01

    We utilize the GISS Global Climate Middle Atmosphere Model and 8 different climate change experiments, many of them focused on stratospheric climate forcings, to assess the relative influence of tropospheric and stratospheric climate change on the extratropical circulation indices (Arctic Oscillation, AO; North Atlantic Oscillation, NAO). The experiments are run in two different ways: with variable sea surface temperatures (SSTs) to allow for a full tropospheric climate response, and with specified SSTs to minimize the tropospheric change. The results show that tropospheric warming (cooling) experiments and stratospheric cooling (warming) experiments produce more positive (negative) AO/NAO indices. For the typical magnitudes of tropospheric and stratospheric climate changes, the tropospheric response dominates; results are strongest when the tropospheric and stratospheric influences are producing similar phase changes. Both regions produce their effect primarily by altering wave propagation and angular momentum transports, but planetary wave energy changes accompanying tropospheric climate change are also important. Stratospheric forcing has a larger impact on the NAO than on the AO, and the angular momentum transport changes associated with it peak in the upper troposphere, affecting all wavenumbers. Tropospheric climate changes influence both the A0 and NAO with effects that extend throughout the troposphere. For both forcings there is often vertical consistency in the sign of the momentum transport changes, obscuring the difference between direct and indirect mechanisms for influencing the surface circulation.

  10. Climate change and evolution: disentangling environmental and genetic responses.

    PubMed

    Gienapp, P; Teplitsky, C; Alho, J S; Mills, J A; Merilä, J

    2008-01-01

    Rapid climate change is likely to impose strong selection pressures on traits important for fitness, and therefore, microevolution in response to climate-mediated selection is potentially an important mechanism mitigating negative consequences of climate change. We reviewed the empirical evidence for recent microevolutionary responses to climate change in longitudinal studies emphasizing the following three perspectives emerging from the published data. First, although signatures of climate change are clearly visible in many ecological processes, similar examples of microevolutionary responses in literature are in fact very rare. Second, the quality of evidence for microevolutionary responses to climate change is far from satisfactory as the documented responses are often - if not typically - based on nongenetic data. We reinforce the view that it is as important to make the distinction between genetic (evolutionary) and phenotypic (includes a nongenetic, plastic component) responses clear, as it is to understand the relative roles of plasticity and genetics in adaptation to climate change. Third, in order to illustrate the difficulties and their potential ubiquity in detection of microevolution in response to natural selection, we reviewed the quantitative genetic studies on microevolutionary responses to natural selection in the context of long-term studies of vertebrates. The available evidence points to the overall conclusion that many responses perceived as adaptations to changing environmental conditions could be environmentally induced plastic responses rather than microevolutionary adaptations. Hence, clear-cut evidence indicating a significant role for evolutionary adaptation to ongoing climate warming is conspicuously scarce.

  11. Sensitivity and rapidity of vegetational response to abrupt climate change

    PubMed Central

    Peteet, Dorothy

    2000-01-01

    Rapid climate change characterizes numerous terrestrial sediment records during and since the last glaciation. Vegetational response is best expressed in terrestrial records near ecotones, where sensitivity to climate change is greatest, and response times are as short as decades. PMID:10677467

  12. Urban Plantings: 'Living Laboratories' for Climate Change Response.

    PubMed

    Farrell, Claire; Szota, Christopher; Arndt, Stefan K

    2015-10-01

    Urban plantings are not only valuable resources for understanding 'urban plant physiology' but are 'living laboratories' for understanding plant response to climate change. Therefore, we encourage researchers who currently work in natural ecosystems to consider how urban plantings could enhance their research into plant physiological responses to a changing climate.

  13. Climate change effects on agriculture: economic responses to biophysical shocks.

    PubMed

    Nelson, Gerald C; Valin, Hugo; Sands, Ronald D; Havlík, Petr; Ahammad, Helal; Deryng, Delphine; Elliott, Joshua; Fujimori, Shinichiro; Hasegawa, Tomoko; Heyhoe, Edwina; Kyle, Page; Von Lampe, Martin; Lotze-Campen, Hermann; Mason d'Croz, Daniel; van Meijl, Hans; van der Mensbrugghe, Dominique; Müller, Christoph; Popp, Alexander; Robertson, Richard; Robinson, Sherman; Schmid, Erwin; Schmitz, Christoph; Tabeau, Andrzej; Willenbockel, Dirk

    2014-03-04

    Agricultural production is sensitive to weather and thus directly affected by climate change. Plausible estimates of these climate change impacts require combined use of climate, crop, and economic models. Results from previous studies vary substantially due to differences in models, scenarios, and data. This paper is part of a collective effort to systematically integrate these three types of models. We focus on the economic component of the assessment, investigating how nine global economic models of agriculture represent endogenous responses to seven standardized climate change scenarios produced by two climate and five crop models. These responses include adjustments in yields, area, consumption, and international trade. We apply biophysical shocks derived from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change's representative concentration pathway with end-of-century radiative forcing of 8.5 W/m(2). The mean biophysical yield effect with no incremental CO2 fertilization is a 17% reduction globally by 2050 relative to a scenario with unchanging climate. Endogenous economic responses reduce yield loss to 11%, increase area of major crops by 11%, and reduce consumption by 3%. Agricultural production, cropland area, trade, and prices show the greatest degree of variability in response to climate change, and consumption the lowest. The sources of these differences include model structure and specification; in particular, model assumptions about ease of land use conversion, intensification, and trade. This study identifies where models disagree on the relative responses to climate shocks and highlights research activities needed to improve the representation of agricultural adaptation responses to climate change.

  14. Climate Change Effects on Agriculture: Economic Responses to Biophysical Shocks

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Nelson, Gerald C.; Valin, Hugo; Sands, Ronald D.; Havlik, Petr; Ahammad, Helal; Deryng, Delphine; Elliott, Joshua; Fujimori, Shinichiro; Hasegawa, Tomoko; Heyhoe, Edwina

    2014-01-01

    Agricultural production is sensitive to weather and thus directly affected by climate change. Plausible estimates of these climate change impacts require combined use of climate, crop, and economic models. Results from previous studies vary substantially due to differences in models, scenarios, and data. This paper is part of a collective effort to systematically integrate these three types of models. We focus on the economic component of the assessment, investigating how nine global economic models of agriculture represent endogenous responses to seven standardized climate change scenarios produced by two climate and five crop models. These responses include adjustments in yields, area, consumption, and international trade. We apply biophysical shocks derived from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change's representative concentration pathway with end-of-century radiative forcing of 8.5 W/m(sup 2). The mean biophysical yield effect with no incremental CO2 fertilization is a 17% reduction globally by 2050 relative to a scenario with unchanging climate. Endogenous economic responses reduce yield loss to 11%, increase area of major crops by 11%, and reduce consumption by 3%. Agricultural production, cropland area, trade, and prices show the greatest degree of variability in response to climate change, and consumption the lowest. The sources of these differences include model structure and specification; in particular, model assumptions about ease of land use conversion, intensification, and trade. This study identifies where models disagree on the relative responses to climate shocks and highlights research activities needed to improve the representation of agricultural adaptation responses to climate change.

  15. The physician's response to climate change.

    PubMed

    Sarfaty, Mona; Abouzaid, Safiya

    2009-05-01

    Climate change will have an effect on the health and well-being of the populations cared for by practicing physicians. The anticipated medical effects include heat- and cold-related deaths, cardiovascular illnesses, injuries and mental harms from extreme weather events, respiratory illnesses caused by poor air quality, infectious diseases that emanate from contaminated food, water, or spread of disease vectors, the injuries caused by natural disasters, and the mental harm associated with social disruption. Within several years, such medical problems are likely to reach the doorsteps of many physicians. In the face of this reality, physicians should assume their traditional roles as medical professionals, health educators, and community leaders. Clinicians provide individual health services to patients, some of whom will be especially vulnerable to the emerging health consequences of global warming. Physicians also work in academic medical institutions and hospitals that educate and provide continuing medical education to students, residents, and practitioners. The institutions also produce a measurable carbon footprint. Societies of physicians at national, state, and local levels can choose to use their well-developed avenues of communication to raise awareness of the key issues that are raised by climate change as well as other environmental concerns that have profound implications for human health and well-being.

  16. Community and ecosystem responses to recent climate change

    PubMed Central

    Walther, Gian-Reto

    2010-01-01

    There is ample evidence for ecological responses to recent climate change. Most studies to date have concentrated on the effects of climate change on individuals and species, with particular emphasis on the effects on phenology and physiology of organisms as well as changes in the distribution and range shifts of species. However, responses by individual species to climate change are not isolated; they are connected through interactions with others at the same or adjacent trophic levels. Also from this more complex perspective, recent case studies have emphasized evidence on the effects of climate change on biotic interactions and ecosystem services. This review highlights the ‘knowns’ but also ‘unknowns’ resulting from recent climate impact studies and reveals limitations of (linear) extrapolations from recent climate-induced responses of species to expected trends and magnitudes of future climate change. Hence, there is need not only to continue to focus on the impacts of climate change on the actors in ecological networks but also and more intensively to focus on the linkages between them, and to acknowledge that biotic interactions and feedback processes lead to highly complex, nonlinear and sometimes abrupt responses. PMID:20513710

  17. Shrinking body size as an ecological response to climate change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sheridan, Jennifer A.; Bickford, David

    2011-11-01

    Determining how climate change will affect global ecology and ecosystem services is one of the next important frontiers in environmental science. Many species already exhibit smaller sizes as a result of climate change and many others are likely to shrink in response to continued climate change, following fundamental ecological and metabolic rules. This could negatively impact both crop plants and protein sources such as fish that are important for human nutrition. Furthermore, heterogeneity in response is likely to upset ecosystem balances. We discuss future research directions to better understand the trend and help ameliorate the trophic cascades and loss of biodiversity that will probably result from continued decreases in organism size.

  18. Geomorphic responses as indicators of paleoclimate and climatic change

    SciTech Connect

    1998-07-01

    There is little doubt that climate is an important parameter affecting the shape of the Earth`s surface. However absolute observance to the principles of climatic geomorphology leads us away from the study of processes because the analyses passes directly from climate to landscape form. An alternative approach is to examine the effects of climate change on the nature of the processes operating in the near surface environment. Utilizing this methodology, the climate-process relations take on greater significance, and lead to an understanding of the response(s) of geomorphic systems to shifts in climatic regime. Given that geomorphic systems respond to changes in climate regime, it should also be true that delineation of the changes in the types, rates, and magnitudes of geomorphic processes will provide insights into the timing and nature of past shifts in climate, particularly effective moisture. It is this approach that has been utilized herein. Specifically, geomorphic responses in eolian, lacustrine, and fluvial systems that have resulted in erosional and depositional events have been documented for several sites in Nevada (Figure 1), and used to infer the timing and character of climatic change in the Basin and Range Physiographic Province. The results and conclusions of the specific studies are provided.

  19. A probabilistic model of ecosystem response to climate change

    SciTech Connect

    Shevliakova, E.; Dowlatabadi, H.

    1994-12-31

    Anthropogenic activities are leading to rapid changes in land cover and emissions of greenhouse gases into the atmosphere. These changes can bring about climate change typified by average global temperatures rising by 1--5 C over the next century. Climate change of this magnitude is likely to alter the distribution of terrestrial ecosystems on a large scale. Options available for dealing with such change are abatement of emissions, adaptation, and geoengineering. The integrated assessment of climate change demands that frameworks be developed where all the elements of the climate problem are present (from economic activity to climate change and its impacts on market and non-market goods and services). Integrated climate assessment requires multiple impact metrics and multi-attribute utility functions to simulate the response of different key actors/decision-makers to the actual physical impacts (rather than a dollar value) of the climate-damage vs. policy-cost debate. This necessitates direct modeling of ecosystem impacts of climate change. The authors have developed a probabilistic model of ecosystem response to global change. This model differs from previous efforts in that it is statistically estimated using actual ecosystem and climate data yielding a joint multivariate probability of prevalence for each ecosystem, given climatic conditions. The authors expect this approach to permit simulation of inertia and competition which have, so far, been absent in transfer models of continental-scale ecosystem response to global change. Thus, although the probability of one ecotype will dominate others at a given point, others would have the possibility of establishing an early foothold.

  20. Climate change effects on agriculture: Economic responses to biophysical shocks

    PubMed Central

    Nelson, Gerald C.; Valin, Hugo; Sands, Ronald D.; Havlík, Petr; Ahammad, Helal; Deryng, Delphine; Elliott, Joshua; Fujimori, Shinichiro; Hasegawa, Tomoko; Heyhoe, Edwina; Kyle, Page; Von Lampe, Martin; Lotze-Campen, Hermann; Mason d’Croz, Daniel; van Meijl, Hans; van der Mensbrugghe, Dominique; Müller, Christoph; Popp, Alexander; Robertson, Richard; Robinson, Sherman; Schmid, Erwin; Schmitz, Christoph; Tabeau, Andrzej; Willenbockel, Dirk

    2014-01-01

    Agricultural production is sensitive to weather and thus directly affected by climate change. Plausible estimates of these climate change impacts require combined use of climate, crop, and economic models. Results from previous studies vary substantially due to differences in models, scenarios, and data. This paper is part of a collective effort to systematically integrate these three types of models. We focus on the economic component of the assessment, investigating how nine global economic models of agriculture represent endogenous responses to seven standardized climate change scenarios produced by two climate and five crop models. These responses include adjustments in yields, area, consumption, and international trade. We apply biophysical shocks derived from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s representative concentration pathway with end-of-century radiative forcing of 8.5 W/m2. The mean biophysical yield effect with no incremental CO2 fertilization is a 17% reduction globally by 2050 relative to a scenario with unchanging climate. Endogenous economic responses reduce yield loss to 11%, increase area of major crops by 11%, and reduce consumption by 3%. Agricultural production, cropland area, trade, and prices show the greatest degree of variability in response to climate change, and consumption the lowest. The sources of these differences include model structure and specification; in particular, model assumptions about ease of land use conversion, intensification, and trade. This study identifies where models disagree on the relative responses to climate shocks and highlights research activities needed to improve the representation of agricultural adaptation responses to climate change. PMID:24344285

  1. Climate change effects on agriculture: Economic responses to biophysical shocks

    SciTech Connect

    Nelson, Gerald; Valin, Hugo; Sands, Ronald; Havlik, Petr; Ahammad, Helal; Deryng, Delphine; Elliott, Joshua; Fujimori, Shinichiro; Hasegawa, Tomoko; Heyhoe, Edwina; Kyle, G. Page; von Lampe, Martin; Lotze-Campen, Hermann; Mason d'Croz, Daniel; van Meijl, Hans; van der Mensbrugghe, Dominique; Mueller, C.; Popp, Alexander; Robertson, Richard; Robinson, Sherman; Schmid, E.; Schmitz, Christoph; Tabeau, Andrzej; Willenbockel, Dirk

    2013-12-16

    Agricultural production is sensitive to weather and will thus be directly affected by climate change. Plausible estimates of these climate change impacts require combined use of climate, crop, and economic models. Results from previous studies vary substantially due to differences in models, scenarios, and data. This paper is part of a collective effort to systematically integrate these three types of models. We focus on the economic component of the assessment, investigating how nine global economic models of agriculture represent endogenous responses to seven standardized climate change scenarios produced by two climate and five crop models. These responses include adjustments in yields, area, consumption, and international trade. We apply biophysical shocks derived from the IPCC’s Representative Concentration Pathway that result in end-of-century radiative forcing of 8.5 watts per square meter. The mean biophysical impact on crop yield with no incremental CO2 fertilization is a 17 percent reduction globally by 2050 relative to a scenario with unchanging climate. Endogenous economic responses reduce yield loss to 11 percent, increase area of major crops by 12 percent, and reduce consumption by 2 percent. Agricultural production, cropland area, trade, and prices show the greatest degree of variability in response to climate change, and consumption the lowest. The sources of these differences includes model structure and specification; in particular, model assumptions about ease of land use conversion, intensification, and trade. This study identifies where models disagree on the relative responses to climate shocks and highlights research activities needed to improve the representation of agricultural adaptation responses to climate change.

  2. Novel competitors shape species' responses to climate change.

    PubMed

    Alexander, Jake M; Diez, Jeffrey M; Levine, Jonathan M

    2015-09-24

    Understanding how species respond to climate change is critical for forecasting the future dynamics and distribution of pests, diseases and biological diversity. Although ecologists have long acknowledged species' direct physiological and demographic responses to climate, more recent work suggests that these direct responses can be overwhelmed by indirect effects mediated via other interacting community members. Theory suggests that some of the most dramatic impacts of community change will probably arise through the assembly of novel species combinations after asynchronous migrations with climate. Empirical tests of this prediction are rare, as existing work focuses on the effects of changing interactions between competitors that co-occur today. To explore how species' responses to climate warming depend on how their competitors migrate to track climate, we transplanted alpine plant species and intact plant communities along a climate gradient in the Swiss Alps. Here we show that when alpine plants were transplanted to warmer climates to simulate a migration failure, their performance was strongly reduced by novel competitors that could migrate upwards from lower elevation; these effects generally exceeded the impact of warming on competition with current competitors. In contrast, when we grew the focal plants under their current climate to simulate climate tracking, a shift in the competitive environment to novel high-elevation competitors had little to no effect. This asymmetry in the importance of changing competitor identity at the leading versus trailing range edges is best explained by the degree of functional similarity between current and novel competitors. We conclude that accounting for novel competitive interactions may be essential to predict species' responses to climate change accurately.

  3. Public health responses to climate change health impacts in Indonesia.

    PubMed

    Wirawan, I Made Ady

    2010-01-01

    Although climate change is a global concern, there are particular considerations for Indonesia as an archipelagic nation. These include the vulnerability of people living in small islands and coastal areas to rising sea levels; the expansion of the important mosquito-borne diseases, particularly malaria and dengue, into areas that lack of immunity; and the increase in water-borne diseases and malnutrition. This article proposes a set of public health responses to climate change health impacts in Indonesia. Some important principles and practices in public health are highlighted, to develop effective public health approaches to climate change in Indonesia.

  4. A Model of the Responses of Ecotones to Climate Change.

    PubMed

    Noble, Ian R

    1993-08-01

    It has been suggested that global climatic change may be detected by monitoring the positions of ecotones. I built a model of the dynamics of ecotones similar to those found in altitudinal or latitudinal treelines, where a slow tendency for the ecotone to advance is counterbalanced by disturbances such as fire or landslides. The model showed that the response of such ecotones to a wide range of simulated climate changes was slow and that the ecotone front was dissected. It would appear that such ecotones would not make suitable sites for monitoring climate change.

  5. Climate change and mammals: evolutionary versus plastic responses.

    PubMed

    Boutin, Stan; Lane, Jeffrey E

    2014-01-01

    Phenotypic plasticity and microevolution are the two primary means by which organisms respond adaptively to local conditions. While these mechanisms are not mutually exclusive, their relative magnitudes will influence both the rate of, and ability to sustain, phenotypic responses to climate change. We review accounts of recent phenotypic changes in wild mammal populations with the purpose of critically evaluating the following: (i) whether climate change has been identified as the causal mechanism producing the observed change; (ii) whether the change is adaptive; and (iii) the relative influences of evolution and/or phenotypic plasticity underlying the change. The available data for mammals are scant. We found twelve studies that report changes in phenology, body weight or litter size. In all cases, the observed response was primarily due to plasticity. Only one study (of advancing parturition dates in American red squirrels) provided convincing evidence of contemporary evolution. Subsequently, however, climate change has been shown to not be the causal mechanism underlying this shift. We also summarize studies that have shown evolutionary potential (i.e. the trait is heritable and/or under selection) in traits with putative associations with climate change and discuss future directions that need to be undertaken before a conclusive demonstration of plastic or evolutionary responses to climate change in wild mammals can be made.

  6. Adaptive thermoregulation in endotherms may alter responses to climate change.

    PubMed

    Boyles, Justin G; Seebacher, Frank; Smit, Ben; McKechnie, Andrew E

    2011-11-01

    Climate change is one of the major issues facing natural populations and thus a focus of recent research has been to predict the responses of organisms to these changes. Models are becoming more complex and now commonly include physiological traits of the organisms of interest. However, endothermic species have received less attention than have ectotherms in these mechanistic models. Further, it is not clear whether responses of endotherms to climate change are modified by variation in thermoregulatory characteristics associated with phenotypic plasticity and/or adaptation to past selective pressures. Here, we review the empirical data on thermal adaptation and acclimatization in endotherms and discuss how those factors may be important in models of responses to climate change. We begin with a discussion of why thermoregulation and thermal sensitivity at high body temperatures should be co-adapted. Importantly, we show that there is, in fact, considerable variation in the ability of endotherms to tolerate high body temperatures and/or high environmental temperatures, but a better understanding of this variation will likely be critical for predicting responses to future climatic scenarios. Next, we discuss why variation in thermoregulatory characteristics should be considered when modeling the effects of climate change on heterothermic endotherms. Finally, we review some biophysical and biochemical factors that will limit adaptation and acclimation in endotherms. We consider both long-term, directional climate change and short-term (but increasingly common) anomalies in climate such as extreme heat waves and we suggest areas of important future research relating to both our basic understanding of endothermic thermoregulation and the responses of endotherms to climate change.

  7. Response of switchgrass yield to future climate change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tulbure, Mirela G.; Wimberly, Michael C.; Owens, Vance N.

    2012-12-01

    A climate envelope approach was used to model the response of switchgrass, a model bioenergy species in the United States, to future climate change. The model was built using general additive models (GAMs), and switchgrass yields collected at 45 field trial locations as the response variable. The model incorporated variables previously shown to be the main determinants of switchgrass yield, and utilized current and predicted 1 km climate data from WorldClim. The models were run with current WorldClim data and compared with results of predicted yield obtained using two climate change scenarios across three global change models for three time steps. Results did not predict an increase in maximum switchgrass yield but showed an overall shift in areas of high switchgrass productivity for both cytotypes. For upland cytotypes, the shift in high yields was concentrated in northern and north-eastern areas where there were increases in average growing season temperature, whereas for lowland cultivars the areas where yields were projected to increase were associated with increases in average early growing season precipitation. These results highlight the fact that the influences of climate change on switchgrass yield are spatially heterogeneous and vary depending on cytotype. Knowledge of spatial distribution of suitable areas for switchgrass production under climate change should be incorporated into planning of current and future biofuel production. Understanding how switchgrass yields will be affected by future changes in climate is important for achieving a sustainable biofuels economy.

  8. Predicting the Response of Electricity Load to Climate Change

    SciTech Connect

    Sullivan, Patrick; Colman, Jesse; Kalendra, Eric

    2015-07-28

    Our purpose is to develop a methodology to quantify the impact of climate change on electric loads in the United States. We perform simple linear regression, assisted by geospatial smoothing, on paired temperature and load time-series to estimate the heating- and coolinginduced sensitivity to temperature across 300 transmission zones and 16 seasonal and diurnal time periods. The estimated load sensitivities can be coupled with climate scenarios to quantify the potential impact of climate change on load, with a primary application being long-term electricity scenarios. The method allows regional and seasonal differences in climate and load response to be reflected in the electricity scenarios. While the immediate product of this analysis was designed to mesh with the spatial and temporal resolution of a specific electricity model to enable climate change scenarios and analysis with that model, we also propose that the process could be applied for other models and purposes.

  9. Response surfaces for climate change impact assessments in urban areas.

    PubMed

    Semadeni-Davies, A

    2003-01-01

    Assessment of the impacts of climate change in real-world water systems, such as urban drainage networks, is a research priority for IPCC (Intergovernmental Panel of Climate Change). The usual approach is to force a hydrological transformation model with a changed climate scenario. To tackle uncertainty, the model should be run with at least high, middle and low change scenarios. This paper shows the value of response surfaces for displaying multiple simulated responses to incremental changes in air temperature and precipitation. The example given is inflow, related to sewer infiltration, at the Lycksele waste water treatment plant. The range of plausible changes in inflow is displayed for a series of runs for eight GCMs (Global Circulation Model; ACACIA; Carter, 2002, pers. comm.). These runs are summarised by climate envelopes, one for each prediction time-slice (2020, 2050, 2080). Together, the climate envelopes and response surfaces allow uncertainty to be easily seen. Winter inflows are currently sensitive to temperature, but if average temperature rises to above zero, inflow will be most sensitive to precipitation. Spring inflows are sensitive to changes in winter snow accumulation and melt. Inflow responses are highly dependent on the greenhouse gas emission scenario and GCM chosen.

  10. Fast Vegetational Responses to Late-Glacial Climate Change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Williams, J. W.; Post, D. M.; Cwynar, L. C.; Lotter, A. F.; Levesque, A. J.

    2001-12-01

    How rapidly can natural ecosystems respond to rapid climate change? This question can be addressed by studying paired paleoecological and paleoclimatological records spanning the last deglaciation. Between 16 and 10 ka, abrupt climatic oscillations (e.g. Younger Dryas, Gerzensee/Killarney Oscillations) interrupted the general warming trend. Rates of climate change during these events were as fast or faster than projected rates of change for this century. We compiled a dozen high-resolution lacustrine records in North America and Europe with a pollen record and independent climatic proxy, a clear Younger Dryas signal, and good age control. Cross-correlation analysis suggests that vegetation responded rapidly to late-glacial climate change, with significant changes in vegetation composition occurring within the lifespan of individual trees. At all sites, vegetation lagged climate by less than 200 years, and at two-thirds of the sites, the initial vegetational response occurred within 100 years. The finding of rapid vegetational responses is consistent across sites and continents, and is similar to the 100-200 year response times predicted by gap-scale forest models. Likely mechanisms include 1) increased susceptibility of mature trees to disturbances such as fire, wind, and disease, thereby opening up gaps for colonization, 2) the proximity of these sites to late-glacial treeline, where climate may directly control plant population densities and range limits, 3) the presence of herbaceous taxa with short generation times in these plant communities, and 4) rapid migration due to rare long-distance seed dispersals. Our results are consistent with reports that plant ranges are already shifting in response to recent climate change, and suggest that these shifts will persist for the next several centuries. Widespread changes in plant distributions may affect surface-atmosphere interactions and will challenge attempts to manage ecosystems and conserve biodiversity.

  11. Plastic and evolutionary responses to climate change in fish

    PubMed Central

    Crozier, Lisa G; Hutchings, Jeffrey A

    2014-01-01

    The physical and ecological ‘fingerprints’ of anthropogenic climate change over the past century are now well documented in many environments and taxa. We reviewed the evidence for phenotypic responses to recent climate change in fish. Changes in the timing of migration and reproduction, age at maturity, age at juvenile migration, growth, survival and fecundity were associated primarily with changes in temperature. Although these traits can evolve rapidly, only two studies attributed phenotypic changes formally to evolutionary mechanisms. The correlation-based methods most frequently employed point largely to ‘fine-grained’ population responses to environmental variability (i.e. rapid phenotypic changes relative to generation time), consistent with plastic mechanisms. Ultimately, many species will likely adapt to long-term warming trends overlaid on natural climate oscillations. Considering the strong plasticity in all traits studied, we recommend development and expanded use of methods capable of detecting evolutionary change, such as the long term study of selection coefficients and temporal shifts in reaction norms, and increased attention to forecasting adaptive change in response to the synergistic interactions of the multiple selection pressures likely to be associated with climate change. PMID:24454549

  12. Changes in Southeast Asian Climate: Response to and Feedback onto Global Climate Change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, S.

    2015-12-01

    This study is focused on the long-term changes in the climate over Southeast Asia (SEA) and its adjacent regions. The changes in SEA climate are closely related to the changes in global climate, especially via the changes in ENSO and the large-scale Asian monsoon circulation. In the past decades, both ENSO and the monsoon have experienced remarkable long-term changes, leading to significant climate signals over Southeast Asia and its adjacent regions. This study attributes these climate signals to different factors, emphasizing the contributions from water vapor feedback to surface climate signals, and from cloud and atmospheric feedbacks to the changes in the troposphere. On the other hand, SEA and its adjacent regions also exert significant influences on the climate outside the regions. Various experiments with NCAR CESM and other earth system models are applied to investigate the impacts of the regional climate on the climate over Africa, Asian-Pacific-American regions, and the southern hemisphere.

  13. A Global Framework for Monitoring Phenological Responses to Climate Change

    SciTech Connect

    White, Michael A; Hoffman, Forrest M; Hargrove, William Walter; Nemani, Ramakrishna R

    2005-01-01

    Remote sensing of vegetation phenology is an important method with which to monitor terrestrial responses to climate change, but most approaches include signals from multiple forcings, such as mixed phenological signals from multiple biomes, urbanization, political changes, shifts in agricultural practices, and disturbances. Consequently, it is difficult to extract a clear signal from the usually assumed forcing: climate change. Here, using global 8 km 1982 to 1999 Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) data and an eight-element monthly climatology, we identified pixels whose wavelet power spectrum was consistently dominated by annual cycles and then created phenologically and climatically self-similar clusters, which we term phenoregions. We then ranked and screened each phenoregion as a function of landcover homogeneity and consistency, evidence of human impacts, and political diversity. Remaining phenoregions represented areas with a minimized probability of non-climatic forcings and form elemental units for long-term phenological monitoring.

  14. Analysing responses to climate change through the lens of reflexivity.

    PubMed

    Davidson, Debra

    2012-12-01

    Sociologists are increasingly directing attention toward social responses to climate change. As is true of any new field of inquiry, theoretical frameworks guiding the research to date have room for improvement. One advance could be achieved through closer engagement with Reflexivity Theory, particularly the work of Margaret Archer, who asks just how individuals come to give attention to certain problems, and formulate responses to them. Individuals vary significantly in regard to their understanding of and concern for anthropogenic climate change, and these standpoints in turn influence commitment to mitigation and adaptation. The emergent social interactions among all such agents in turn influence the morphogenetic trajectories through which social structures will evolve, but the role of 'meta-reflexives' is particularly crucial. Identifying pathways of individual climate change reflexivity can make a valuable contribution to our understanding of the potential for and nature of collective responses. In this paper, I explore climate change reflexivity, with particular attention to climate change meta-reflexives, through a qualitative analysis of personal interviews with residents of two small communities in Alberta, Canada. Applying Reflexivity Theory to this context articulates dimensions of reflexive processing not elaborated in current theoretical treatments, including future outlook and comfort with uncertainty, among others.

  15. Rapid response to climate change in a marginal sea.

    PubMed

    Schroeder, K; Chiggiato, J; Josey, S A; Borghini, M; Aracri, S; Sparnocchia, S

    2017-06-22

    The Mediterranean Sea is a mid-latitude marginal sea, particularly responsive to climate change as reported by recent studies. The Sicily Channel is a choke point separating the sea in two main basins, the Eastern Mediterranean Sea and the Western Mediterranean Sea. Here, we report and analyse a long-term record (1993-2016) of the thermohaline properties of the Intermediate Water that crosses the Sicily Channel, showing increasing temperature and salinity trends much stronger than those observed at intermediate depths in the global ocean. We investigate the causes of the observed trends and in particular determine the role of a changing climate over the Eastern Mediterranean, where the Intermediate Water is formed. The long-term Sicily record reveals how fast the response to climate change can be in a marginal sea like the Mediterranean Sea compared to the global ocean, and demonstrates the essential role of long time series in the ocean.

  16. Choice of baseline climate data impacts projected species' responses to climate change.

    PubMed

    Baker, David J; Hartley, Andrew J; Butchart, Stuart H M; Willis, Stephen G

    2016-07-01

    Climate data created from historic climate observations are integral to most assessments of potential climate change impacts, and frequently comprise the baseline period used to infer species-climate relationships. They are often also central to downscaling coarse resolution climate simulations from General Circulation Models (GCMs) to project future climate scenarios at ecologically relevant spatial scales. Uncertainty in these baseline data can be large, particularly where weather observations are sparse and climate dynamics are complex (e.g. over mountainous or coastal regions). Yet, importantly, this uncertainty is almost universally overlooked when assessing potential responses of species to climate change. Here, we assessed the importance of historic baseline climate uncertainty for projections of species' responses to future climate change. We built species distribution models (SDMs) for 895 African bird species of conservation concern, using six different climate baselines. We projected these models to two future periods (2040-2069, 2070-2099), using downscaled climate projections, and calculated species turnover and changes in species-specific climate suitability. We found that the choice of baseline climate data constituted an important source of uncertainty in projections of both species turnover and species-specific climate suitability, often comparable with, or more important than, uncertainty arising from the choice of GCM. Importantly, the relative contribution of these factors to projection uncertainty varied spatially. Moreover, when projecting SDMs to sites of biodiversity importance (Important Bird and Biodiversity Areas), these uncertainties altered site-level impacts, which could affect conservation prioritization. Our results highlight that projections of species' responses to climate change are sensitive to uncertainty in the baseline climatology. We recommend that this should be considered routinely in such analyses.

  17. SPRUCE: Spruce and Peatland Responses under Climatic and Environmental Change

    DOE Data Explorer

    SPRUCE is an experiment to assess the response of northern peatland ecosystems to increases in temperature and exposures to elevated atmospheric CO2 concentrations. It is the primary component of the Terrestrial Ecosystem Science Scientific Focus Area of ORNL's Climate Change Program, focused on terrestrial ecosystems and the mechanisms that underlie their responses to climatic change. The experimental work is to be conducted in a Picea mariana [black spruce] - Sphagnum spp. bog forest in northern Minnesota, 40 km north of Grand Rapids, in the USDA Forest Service Marcell Experimental Forest (MEF). The site is located at the southern margin of the boreal peatland forest. It is an ecosystem considered especially vulnerable to climate change, and anticipated to be near its tipping point with respect to climate change. Responses to warming and interactions with increased atmospheric CO2 concentration are anticipated to have important feedbacks on the atmosphere and climate, because of the high carbon stocks harbored by such ecosystems.[copied from http://mnspruce.ornl.gov/] While some data files are restricted to access by project members only, others are available for public download now, even as research is being actively conducted.

  18. Response of seafloor ecosystems to abrupt global climate change.

    PubMed

    Moffitt, Sarah E; Hill, Tessa M; Roopnarine, Peter D; Kennett, James P

    2015-04-14

    Anthropogenic climate change is predicted to decrease oceanic oxygen (O2) concentrations, with potentially significant effects on marine ecosystems. Geologically recent episodes of abrupt climatic warming provide opportunities to assess the effects of changing oxygenation on marine communities. Thus far, this knowledge has been largely restricted to investigations using Foraminifera, with little being known about ecosystem-scale responses to abrupt, climate-forced deoxygenation. We here present high-resolution records based on the first comprehensive quantitative analysis, to our knowledge, of changes in marine metazoans (Mollusca, Echinodermata, Arthropoda, and Annelida; >5,400 fossils and trace fossils) in response to the global warming associated with the last glacial to interglacial episode. The molluscan archive is dominated by extremophile taxa, including those containing endosymbiotic sulfur-oxidizing bacteria (Lucinoma aequizonatum) and those that graze on filamentous sulfur-oxidizing benthic bacterial mats (Alia permodesta). This record, from 16,100 to 3,400 y ago, demonstrates that seafloor invertebrate communities are subject to major turnover in response to relatively minor inferred changes in oxygenation (>1.5 to <0.5 mL⋅L(-1) [O2]) associated with abrupt (<100 y) warming of the eastern Pacific. The biotic turnover and recovery events within the record expand known rates of marine biological recovery by an order of magnitude, from <100 to >1,000 y, and illustrate the crucial role of climate and oceanographic change in driving long-term successional changes in ocean ecosystems.

  19. Response of seafloor ecosystems to abrupt global climate change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Moffitt, Sarah E.; Hill, Tessa M.; Roopnarine, Peter D.; Kennett, James P.

    2015-04-01

    Anthropogenic climate change is predicted to decrease oceanic oxygen (O2) concentrations, with potentially significant effects on marine ecosystems. Geologically recent episodes of abrupt climatic warming provide opportunities to assess the effects of changing oxygenation on marine communities. Thus far, this knowledge has been largely restricted to investigations using Foraminifera, with little being known about ecosystem-scale responses to abrupt, climate-forced deoxygenation. We here present high-resolution records based on the first comprehensive quantitative analysis, to our knowledge, of changes in marine metazoans (Mollusca, Echinodermata, Arthropoda, and Annelida; >5,400 fossils and trace fossils) in response to the global warming associated with the last glacial to interglacial episode. The molluscan archive is dominated by extremophile taxa, including those containing endosymbiotic sulfur-oxidizing bacteria (Lucinoma aequizonatum) and those that graze on filamentous sulfur-oxidizing benthic bacterial mats (Alia permodesta). This record, from 16,100 to 3,400 y ago, demonstrates that seafloor invertebrate communities are subject to major turnover in response to relatively minor inferred changes in oxygenation (>1.5 to <0.5 mLṡL-1 [O2]) associated with abrupt (<100 y) warming of the eastern Pacific. The biotic turnover and recovery events within the record expand known rates of marine biological recovery by an order of magnitude, from <100 to >1,000 y, and illustrate the crucial role of climate and oceanographic change in driving long-term successional changes in ocean ecosystems.

  20. Response of seafloor ecosystems to abrupt global climate change

    PubMed Central

    Moffitt, Sarah E.; Hill, Tessa M.; Roopnarine, Peter D.; Kennett, James P.

    2015-01-01

    Anthropogenic climate change is predicted to decrease oceanic oxygen (O2) concentrations, with potentially significant effects on marine ecosystems. Geologically recent episodes of abrupt climatic warming provide opportunities to assess the effects of changing oxygenation on marine communities. Thus far, this knowledge has been largely restricted to investigations using Foraminifera, with little being known about ecosystem-scale responses to abrupt, climate-forced deoxygenation. We here present high-resolution records based on the first comprehensive quantitative analysis, to our knowledge, of changes in marine metazoans (Mollusca, Echinodermata, Arthropoda, and Annelida; >5,400 fossils and trace fossils) in response to the global warming associated with the last glacial to interglacial episode. The molluscan archive is dominated by extremophile taxa, including those containing endosymbiotic sulfur-oxidizing bacteria (Lucinoma aequizonatum) and those that graze on filamentous sulfur-oxidizing benthic bacterial mats (Alia permodesta). This record, from 16,100 to 3,400 y ago, demonstrates that seafloor invertebrate communities are subject to major turnover in response to relatively minor inferred changes in oxygenation (>1.5 to <0.5 mL⋅L−1 [O2]) associated with abrupt (<100 y) warming of the eastern Pacific. The biotic turnover and recovery events within the record expand known rates of marine biological recovery by an order of magnitude, from <100 to >1,000 y, and illustrate the crucial role of climate and oceanographic change in driving long-term successional changes in ocean ecosystems. PMID:25825727

  1. Responses of dead forest fuel moisture to climate change

    Treesearch

    Yongqiang Liu

    2016-01-01

    Forest fuel moisture is an important factor for wildland fire behavior. Predicting future wildfire trends and controlled burned conditions is essential to effective natural resource management, but the associated effects of forest fuel moisture remain uncertain. This study investigates the responses of dead forest fuel moisture to climate change in the...

  2. CORAL RESPONSES TO CLIMATE AND LAND USE CHANGES

    EPA Science Inventory

    Fisher, William S., Debbie L. Santavy, John E. Rogers and Richard G. Zepp. In press. Coral Responses to Climate and Land Use Changes (Abstract). To be presented at the SETAC Fourth World Congress, 14-18 November 2004, Portland, OR. 1 p. (ERL,GB R1019).

    Coral reefs have ex...

  3. CORAL RESPONSES TO CLIMATE AND LAND USE CHANGES

    EPA Science Inventory

    Fisher, William S., Debbie L. Santavy, John E. Rogers and Richard G. Zepp. In press. Coral Responses to Climate and Land Use Changes (Abstract). To be presented at the SETAC Fourth World Congress, 14-18 November 2004, Portland, OR. 1 p. (ERL,GB R1019).

    Coral reefs have ex...

  4. Financial market response to extreme events indicating climatic change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Anttila-Hughes, J. K.

    2016-05-01

    A variety of recent extreme climatic events are considered to be strong evidence that the climate is warming, but these incremental advances in certainty often seem ignored by non-scientists. I identify two unusual types of events that are considered to be evidence of climate change, announcements by NASA that the global annual average temperature has set a new record, and the sudden collapse of major polar ice shelves, and then conduct an event study to test whether news of these events changes investors' valuation of energy companies, a subset of firms whose future performance is closely tied to climate change. I find evidence that both classes of events have influenced energy stock prices since the 1990s, with record temperature announcements on average associated with negative returns and ice shelf collapses associated with positive returns. I identify a variety of plausible mechanisms that may be driving these differential responses, discuss implications for energy markets' views on long-term regulatory risk, and conclude that investors not only pay attention to scientifically significant climate events, but discriminate between signals carrying different information about the nature of climatic change.

  5. Community-level phenological response to climate change.

    PubMed

    Ovaskainen, Otso; Skorokhodova, Svetlana; Yakovleva, Marina; Sukhov, Alexander; Kutenkov, Anatoliy; Kutenkova, Nadezhda; Shcherbakov, Anatoliy; Meyke, Evegeniy; Delgado, Maria del Mar

    2013-08-13

    Climate change may disrupt interspecies phenological synchrony, with adverse consequences to ecosystem functioning. We present here a 40-y-long time series on 10,425 dates that were systematically collected in a single Russian locality for 97 plant, 78 bird, 10 herptile, 19 insect, and 9 fungal phenological events, as well as for 77 climatic events related to temperature, precipitation, snow, ice, and frost. We show that species are shifting their phenologies at dissimilar rates, partly because they respond to different climatic factors, which in turn are shifting at dissimilar rates. Plants have advanced their spring phenology even faster than average temperature has increased, whereas migratory birds have shown more divergent responses and shifted, on average, less than plants. Phenological events of birds and insects were mainly triggered by climate cues (variation in temperature and snow and ice cover) occurring over the course of short periods, whereas many plants, herptiles, and fungi were affected by long-term climatic averages. Year-to-year variation in plants, herptiles, and insects showed a high degree of synchrony, whereas the phenological timing of fungi did not correlate with any other taxonomic group. In many cases, species that are synchronous in their year-to-year dynamics have also shifted in congruence, suggesting that climate change may have disrupted phenological synchrony less than has been previously assumed. Our results illustrate how a multidimensional change in the physical environment has translated into a community-level change in phenology.

  6. Forest vegetation dynamics and its response to climate changes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zoran, Maria A.; Zoran, Liviu Florin V.; Dida, Adrian I.

    2016-10-01

    Forest areas are experiencing rapid land cover change caused by human-induced land degradation and extreme climatic events. Satellite remote sensing provides a useful tool to capture the temporal dynamics of forest vegetation change in response to climate shifts, at spatial resolutions fine enough to capture the spatial heterogeneity. Frequent satellite data products, for example, can provide the basis for studying time-series of biophysical parameters related to vegetation dynamics. Vegetation index time series provide a useful way to monitor forest vegetation phenological variations. In this study, we used MODIS Terra/Aqua time-series data, along with yearly and monthly net radiation, air temperature, and precipitation data to examine the feedback mechanisms between climate and forest vegetation. Have been quantitatively described Normalized Difference Vegetation Index(NDVI) /Enhanced Vegetation Index (EVI), Leaf Area Index (LAI), Evapotranspiration (ET) and Gross Primary Production (GPP) temporal changes for Cernica- Branesti forest area, a periurban zone of Bucharest city in Romania, from the perspective of vegetation phenology and its relation with climate changes and extreme climate events (summer heat waves). A time series from 2000 to 2016 of the MODIS Terra was analyzed to extract forest biophysical parameters anomalies. Forest vegetation phenology analyses were developed for diverse forest land-covers providing a useful way to analyze and understand the phenology associated to those landcovers. Correlations between NDVI/EVI , LAI, ET and GPP time series and climatic variables have been computed.

  7. Community-level phenological response to climate change

    PubMed Central

    Ovaskainen, Otso; Skorokhodova, Svetlana; Yakovleva, Marina; Sukhov, Alexander; Kutenkov, Anatoliy; Kutenkova, Nadezhda; Shcherbakov, Anatoliy; Meyke, Evegeniy; Delgado, Maria del Mar

    2013-01-01

    Climate change may disrupt interspecies phenological synchrony, with adverse consequences to ecosystem functioning. We present here a 40-y-long time series on 10,425 dates that were systematically collected in a single Russian locality for 97 plant, 78 bird, 10 herptile, 19 insect, and 9 fungal phenological events, as well as for 77 climatic events related to temperature, precipitation, snow, ice, and frost. We show that species are shifting their phenologies at dissimilar rates, partly because they respond to different climatic factors, which in turn are shifting at dissimilar rates. Plants have advanced their spring phenology even faster than average temperature has increased, whereas migratory birds have shown more divergent responses and shifted, on average, less than plants. Phenological events of birds and insects were mainly triggered by climate cues (variation in temperature and snow and ice cover) occurring over the course of short periods, whereas many plants, herptiles, and fungi were affected by long-term climatic averages. Year-to-year variation in plants, herptiles, and insects showed a high degree of synchrony, whereas the phenological timing of fungi did not correlate with any other taxonomic group. In many cases, species that are synchronous in their year-to-year dynamics have also shifted in congruence, suggesting that climate change may have disrupted phenological synchrony less than has been previously assumed. Our results illustrate how a multidimensional change in the physical environment has translated into a community-level change in phenology. PMID:23901098

  8. Climate change in the oceans: Human impacts and responses.

    PubMed

    Allison, Edward H; Bassett, Hannah R

    2015-11-13

    Although it has far-reaching consequences for humanity, attention to climate change impacts on the ocean lags behind concern for impacts on the atmosphere and land. Understanding these impacts, as well as society's diverse perspectives and multiscale responses to the changing oceans, requires a correspondingly diverse body of scholarship in the physical, biological, and social sciences and humanities. This can ensure that a plurality of values and viewpoints is reflected in the research that informs climate policy and may enable the concerns of maritime societies and economic sectors to be heard in key adaptation and mitigation discussions.

  9. Key ecological responses to nitrogen are altered by climate change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Greaver, T. L.; Clark, C. M.; Compton, J. E.; Vallano, D.; Talhelm, A. F.; Weaver, C. P.; Band, L. E.; Baron, J. S.; Davidson, E. A.; Tague, C. L.; Felker-Quinn, E.; Lynch, J. A.; Herrick, J. D.; Liu, L.; Goodale, C. L.; Novak, K. J.; Haeuber, R. A.

    2016-09-01

    Climate change and anthropogenic nitrogen deposition are both important ecological threats. Evaluating their cumulative effects provides a more holistic view of ecosystem vulnerability to human activities, which would better inform policy decisions aimed to protect the sustainability of ecosystems. Our knowledge of the cumulative effects of these stressors is growing, but we lack an integrated understanding. In this Review, we describe how climate change alters key processes in terrestrial and freshwater ecosystems related to nitrogen cycling and availability, and the response of ecosystems to nitrogen addition in terms of carbon cycling, acidification and biodiversity.

  10. Climate change in the oceans: Human impacts and responses

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Allison, Edward H.; Bassett, Hannah R.

    2015-11-01

    Although it has far-reaching consequences for humanity, attention to climate change impacts on the ocean lags behind concern for impacts on the atmosphere and land. Understanding these impacts, as well as society’s diverse perspectives and multiscale responses to the changing oceans, requires a correspondingly diverse body of scholarship in the physical, biological, and social sciences and humanities. This can ensure that a plurality of values and viewpoints is reflected in the research that informs climate policy and may enable the concerns of maritime societies and economic sectors to be heard in key adaptation and mitigation discussions.

  11. Key ecological responses to nitrogen are altered by climate change

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Greaver, T.L.; Clark, C.M.; Compton, J.E.; Vallano, D.; Talhelm, A. F.; Weaver, C.P.; Band, L.E.; Baron, J. S.; Davidson, E.A.; Tague, C.L.; Felker-Quinn, E.; Lynch, J.A.; Herrick, J.D.; Liu, L.; Goodale, C.L.; Novak, K. J.; Haeuber, R. A.

    2016-01-01

    Climate change and anthropogenic nitrogen deposition are both important ecological threats. Evaluating their cumulative effects provides a more holistic view of ecosystem vulnerability to human activities, which would better inform policy decisions aimed to protect the sustainability of ecosystems. Our knowledge of the cumulative effects of these stressors is growing, but we lack an integrated understanding. In this Review, we describe how climate change alters key processes in terrestrial and freshwater ecosystems related to nitrogen cycling and availability, and the response of ecosystems to nitrogen addition in terms of carbon cycling, acidification and biodiversity.

  12. Contrasting responses of mean and extreme snowfall to climate change.

    PubMed

    O'Gorman, Paul A

    2014-08-28

    Snowfall is an important element of the climate system, and one that is expected to change in a warming climate. Both mean snowfall and the intensity distribution of snowfall are important, with heavy snowfall events having particularly large economic and human impacts. Simulations with climate models indicate that annual mean snowfall declines with warming in most regions but increases in regions with very low surface temperatures. The response of heavy snowfall events to a changing climate, however, is unclear. Here I show that in simulations with climate models under a scenario of high emissions of greenhouse gases, by the late twenty-first century there are smaller fractional changes in the intensities of daily snowfall extremes than in mean snowfall over many Northern Hemisphere land regions. For example, for monthly climatological temperatures just below freezing and surface elevations below 1,000 metres, the 99.99th percentile of daily snowfall decreases by 8% in the multimodel median, compared to a 65% reduction in mean snowfall. Both mean and extreme snowfall must decrease for a sufficiently large warming, but the climatological temperature above which snowfall extremes decrease with warming in the simulations is as high as -9 °C, compared to -14 °C for mean snowfall. These results are supported by a physically based theory that is consistent with the observed rain-snow transition. According to the theory, snowfall extremes occur near an optimal temperature that is insensitive to climate warming, and this results in smaller fractional changes for higher percentiles of daily snowfall. The simulated changes in snowfall that I find would influence surface snow and its hazards; these changes also suggest that it may be difficult to detect a regional climate-change signal in snowfall extremes.

  13. Understanding coupled climatic, hydrological, and ecosystem responses to global climate change in the Colorado Rockies

    SciTech Connect

    Stohlgren, T.J.; Baron, J. )

    1993-06-01

    A long-term research program to assess the potential effect of global climate change on the Front Range of the Colorado Rockies, including Rocky Mountain National Park is underway. Specifically, three integrated studies are designed to: (1) project future climate change for the Colorado Rockies using a mesoscale atmospheric model to downscale general circulation model results; (2) develop an understanding of the abiotic and biotic controls on forest distribution and productivity as a basis for assessing potential vegetation change for a range of projected climate scenarios; and (3) evaluate potential responses of hydrologic and aquatic ecosystem processes to climate change at watershed, drainage basin and regional scales. The synthesis of these studies will, in addition, assess the interaction between regional vegetation distribution, mesoscale climate, and hydrology. Our goal is to develop a better understanding of regional climate and hydrologic patterns and of species-environment relationships to determine which species and ecosystem processes are most sensitive to rapid environmental change.

  14. Species' traits influenced their response to recent climate change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pacifici, Michela; Visconti, Piero; Butchart, Stuart H. M.; Watson, James E. M.; Cassola, Francesca M.; Rondinini, Carlo

    2017-02-01

    Although it is widely accepted that future climatic change--if unabated--is likely to have major impacts on biodiversity, few studies have attempted to quantify the number of species whose populations have already been impacted by climate change. Using a systematic review of published literature, we identified mammals and birds for which there is evidence that they have already been impacted by climate change. We modelled the relationships between observed responses and intrinsic (for example, body mass) and spatial traits (for example, temperature seasonality within the geographic range). Using this model, we estimated that 47% of terrestrial non-volant threatened mammals (out of 873 species) and 23.4% of threatened birds (out of 1,272 species) may have already been negatively impacted by climate change in at least part of their distribution. Our results suggest that populations of large numbers of threatened species are likely to be already affected by climate change, and that conservation managers, planners and policy makers must take this into account in efforts to safeguard the future of biodiversity.

  15. Soil Microbial Community Responses to Multiple Experimental Climate Change Drivers

    SciTech Connect

    Castro Gonzalez, Hector F; Classen, Aimee T; Austin, Emily E; Norby, Richard J; Schadt, Christopher Warren

    2010-01-01

    Researchers agree that climate change factors such as rising atmospheric [CO{sub 2}] and warming will likely interact to modify ecosystem properties and processes. However, the response of the microbial communities that regulate ecosystem processes is less predictable. We measured the direct and interactive effects of climatic change on soil fungal and bacterial communities (abundance and composition) in a multifactor climate change experiment that exposed a constructed old-field ecosystem to different atmospheric CO{sub 2} concentration (ambient, +300 ppm), temperature (ambient, +3 C), and precipitation (wet and dry) might interact to alter soil bacterial and fungal abundance and community structure in an old-field ecosystem. We found that (i) fungal abundance increased in warmed treatments; (ii) bacterial abundance increased in warmed plots with elevated atmospheric [CO{sub 2}] but decreased in warmed plots under ambient atmospheric [CO{sub 2}]; (iii) the phylogenetic distribution of bacterial and fungal clones and their relative abundance varied among treatments, as indicated by changes in 16S rRNA and 28S rRNA genes; (iv) changes in precipitation altered the relative abundance of Proteobacteria and Acidobacteria, where Acidobacteria decreased with a concomitant increase in the Proteobacteria in wet relative to dry treatments; and (v) changes in precipitation altered fungal community composition, primarily through lineage specific changes within a recently discovered group known as soil clone group I. Taken together, our results indicate that climate change drivers and their interactions may cause changes in bacterial and fungal overall abundance; however, changes in precipitation tended to have a much greater effect on the community composition. These results illustrate the potential for complex community changes in terrestrial ecosystems under climate change scenarios that alter multiple factors simultaneously.

  16. America's Climate Choices: Informing an Effective Response to Climate Change (Invited)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liverman, D. M.; McConnell, M. C.; Raven, P.

    2010-12-01

    At the request of Congress, the National Academy of Sciences convened a series of coordinated activities to provide advice on actions and strategies that the nation can take to respond to climate change. As part of this suite of activities, this study examines information needs and recommends ways the federal government can better inform responses by enhancing climate change and greenhouse gas information and reporting systems and by improving climate communication and education. Demand for better information to support climate-related decisions has grown rapidly as people, organizations, and governments have moved ahead with plans and actions to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and to adapt to the impacts of climate change. To meet this demand, good information systems and services are needed. Without such systems, decision makers cannot evaluate whether particular policies and actions are achieving their goals or should be modified. Although the many non-federal efforts to reduce emissions and/or adapt to future climate changes carry considerable potential to reduce risks related to climate change, there is currently no comprehensive way to assess the effectiveness of those efforts. In addition, the diverse climate change responses to date have resulted in a patchwork of regional, state, and local policies that has prompted many state and business leaders to call for the development of a more predictable and coherent policy environment at the federal level. This report demonstrates that the nation lacks comprehensive, robust, and credible information and reporting systems to inform climate choices and evaluate their effectiveness. This report also argues that decision makers can benefit from a systematic and iterative framework for responding to climate change, in which decisions and policies can be revised in light of new information and experience and that improved information and reporting systems allow for ongoing evaluation of responses to climate risks. The

  17. Evolutionary responses to climate change in parasitic systems.

    PubMed

    Chaianunporn, Thotsapol; Hovestadt, Thomas

    2015-08-01

    Species may respond to climate change in many ecological and evolutionary ways. In this simulation study, we focus on the concurrent evolution of three traits in response to climate change, namely dispersal probability, temperature tolerance (or niche width), and temperature preference (optimal habitat). More specifically, we consider evolutionary responses in host species involved in different types of interaction, that is parasitism or commensalism, and for low or high costs of a temperature tolerance-fertility trade-off (cost of generalization). We find that host species potentially evolve all three traits simultaneously in response to increasing temperature but that the evolutionary response interacts and may be compensatory depending on the conditions. The evolutionary adjustment of temperature preference is slower in the parasitism than in commensalism scenario. Parasitism, in turn, selects for higher temperature tolerance and increased dispersal. High costs for temperature tolerance (i.e. generalization) restrict evolution of tolerance and thus lead to a faster response in temperature preference than that observed under low costs. These results emphasize the possible role of biotic interactions and the importance of 'multidimensional' evolutionary responses to climate change.

  18. Seasonal hydrologic responses to climate change in the Pacific Northwest

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vano, Julie A.; Nijssen, Bart; Lettenmaier, Dennis P.

    2015-04-01

    Increased temperatures and changes in precipitation will result in fundamental changes in the seasonal distribution of streamflow in the Pacific Northwest and will have serious implications for water resources management. To better understand local impacts of regional climate change, we conducted model experiments to determine hydrologic sensitivities of annual, seasonal, and monthly runoff to imposed annual and seasonal changes in precipitation and temperature. We used the Variable Infiltration Capacity (VIC) land-surface hydrology model applied at 1/16° latitude-longitude spatial resolution over the Pacific Northwest (PNW), a scale sufficient to support analyses at the hydrologic unit code eight (HUC-8) basin level. These experiments resolve the spatial character of the sensitivity of future water supply to precipitation and temperature changes by identifying the seasons and locations where climate change will have the biggest impact on runoff. The PNW exhibited a diversity of responses, where transitional (intermediate elevation) watersheds experience the greatest seasonal shifts in runoff in response to cool season warming. We also developed a methodology that uses these hydrologic sensitivities as basin-specific transfer functions to estimate future changes in long-term mean monthly hydrographs directly from climate model output of precipitation and temperature. When principles of linearity and superposition apply, these transfer functions can provide feasible first-order estimates of the likely nature of future seasonal streamflow change without performing downscaling and detailed model simulations.

  19. Climatic predictors of temperature performance curve parameters in ectotherms imply complex responses to climate change.

    PubMed

    Clusella-Trullas, Susana; Blackburn, Tim M; Chown, Steven L

    2011-06-01

    Determining organismal responses to climate change is one of biology's greatest challenges. Recent forecasts for future climates emphasize altered temperature variation and precipitation, but most studies of animals have largely focused on forecasting the outcome of changes in mean temperature. Theory suggests that extreme thermal variation and precipitation will influence species performance and hence affect their response to changes in climate. Using an information-theoretic approach, we show that in squamate ectotherms (mostly lizards and snakes), two fitness-influencing components of performance, the critical thermal maximum and the thermal optimum, are more closely related to temperature variation and to precipitation, respectively, than they are to mean thermal conditions. By contrast, critical thermal minimum is related to mean annual temperature. Our results suggest that temperature variation and precipitation regimes have had a strong influence on the evolution of ectotherm performance, so that forecasts for animal responses to climate change will have to incorporate these factors and not only changes in average temperature.

  20. High Resolution Modelling of Crop Response to Climate Change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mirmasoudi, S. S.; Byrne, J. M.; MacDonald, R. J.; Lewis, D.

    2014-12-01

    Crop production is one of the most vulnerable sectors to climatic variability and change. Increasing atmospheric CO2 concentration and other greenhouse gases are causing increases in global temperature. In western North America, water supply is largely derived from mountain snowmelt. Climate change will have a significant impact on mountain snowpack and subsequently, the snow-derived water supply. This will strain water supplies and increase water demand in areas with substantial irrigation agriculture. Increasing temperatures may create heat stress for some crops regardless of soil water supply, and increasing surface O3 and other pollutants may damage crops and ecosystems. CO2 fertilization may or may not be an advantage in future. This work is part of a larger study that will address a series of questions based on a range of future climate scenarios for several watersheds in western North America. The key questions are: (1) how will snowmelt and rainfall runoff vary in future; (2) how will seasonal and inter-annual soil water supply vary, and how might that impacts food supplies; (3) how might heat stress impact (some) crops even with adequate soil water; (4) will CO2 fertilization alter crop yields; and (5) will pollution loads, particularly O3, cause meaningful changes to crop yields? The Generate Earth Systems Science (GENESYS) Spatial Hydrometeorological Model is an innovative, efficient, high-resolution model designed to assess climate driven changes in mountain snowpack derived water supplies. We will link GENESYS to the CROPWAT crop model system to assess climate driven changes in water requirement and associated crop productivity for a range of future climate scenarios. Literature bases studies will be utilised to develop approximate crop response functions for heat stress, CO2 fertilization and for O3 damages. The overall objective is to create modeling systems that allows meaningful assessment of agricultural productivity at a watershed scale under a

  1. Crop yield response to climate change varies with cropping intensity.

    PubMed

    Challinor, Andrew J; Parkes, Ben; Ramirez-Villegas, Julian

    2015-04-01

    Projections of the response of crop yield to climate change at different spatial scales are known to vary. However, understanding of the causes of systematic differences across scale is limited. Here, we hypothesize that heterogeneous cropping intensity is one source of scale dependency. Analysis of observed global data and regional crop modelling demonstrate that areas of high vs. low cropping intensity can have systematically different yields, in both observations and simulations. Analysis of global crop data suggests that heterogeneity in cropping intensity is a likely source of scale dependency for a number of crops across the globe. Further crop modelling and a meta-analysis of projected tropical maize yields are used to assess the implications for climate change assessments. The results show that scale dependency is a potential source of systematic bias. We conclude that spatially comprehensive assessments of climate impacts based on yield alone, without accounting for cropping intensity, are prone to systematic overestimation of climate impacts. The findings therefore suggest a need for greater attention to crop suitability and land use change when assessing the impacts of climate change. © 2015 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  2. Book Review: Regional Hydrological Response to Climate Change

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Koster, Randal

    1998-01-01

    The book being reviewed, Regional Hydrological Response to Climate Change, addresses the effects of global climate change, particularly global warming induced by greenhouse gas emissions, on hydrological budgets at the regional scale. As noted in its preface, the book consists of peer-reviewed papers delivered at scientific meetings held by the International Geographical Union Working Group on Regional Hydrological Response to Climate Change and Global Warming, supplemented with some additional chapters that round out coverage of the topic. The editors hope that this book will serve as "not only a record of current achievements, but also a stimulus to further hydrological research as the detail and spatial resolution of Global Climate Models improves". The reviewer found the background material on regional climatology to be valuable and the methodologies presented to be of interest. The value of the book is significantly diminished, however by the dated nature of some of the material and by large uncertainties in the predictions of regional precipitation change. The book would have been improved by a much more extensive documentation of the uncertainty associated with each step of the prediction process.

  3. Shallow groundwater temperature response to climate change and urbanization

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Taylor, Craig A.; Stefan, Heinz G.

    2009-09-01

    SummaryGroundwater temperatures, especially in shallow (quaternary) aquifers respond to ground surface temperatures which in turn depend on climate and land use. Groundwater temperatures, therefore, are modified by climate change and urban development. In northern temperate climate regions seasonal temperature cycles penetrate the ground to depths on the order of 10-15 m. In this paper, we develop and apply analytic heat transfer relationships for 1-D unsteady effective diffusion of heat through an unsaturated zone into a flowing aquifer a short distance below the ground surface. We estimate how changes in land use (urban development) and climate change may affect shallow groundwater temperatures. We consider both long-term trends and seasonal cycles in surface temperature changes. Our analysis indicates that a fully urbanized downtown area at the latitude of Minneapolis/St. Paul is likely to have a groundwater temperature that is nearly 3 °C warmer than an undeveloped agricultural area at the same geographic location. Pavements are the main cause of this change. Data collected by the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (MPCA) in the St. Cloud, MN area confirm that land use influences groundwater temperatures. Ground surface temperatures are also projected to rise in response to global warming. In the extreme case of a doubling of atmospheric carbon dioxide (2 × CO 2 climate scenario), groundwater temperatures in the Minneapolis/St. Paul metropolitan area could therefore rise by up to 4 °C. Compounding a land use change from "undeveloped" to "fully urbanized" and a 2 × CO 2 climate scenario, groundwater temperatures are projected to rise by about 5 °C at the latitude of Minneapolis/St. Paul.

  4. Coccolithophore calcification response to past ocean acidification and climate change.

    PubMed

    O'Dea, Sarah A; Gibbs, Samantha J; Bown, Paul R; Young, Jeremy R; Poulton, Alex J; Newsam, Cherry; Wilson, Paul A

    2014-11-17

    Anthropogenic carbon dioxide emissions are forcing rapid ocean chemistry changes and causing ocean acidification (OA), which is of particular significance for calcifying organisms, including planktonic coccolithophores. Detailed analysis of coccolithophore skeletons enables comparison of calcite production in modern and fossil cells in order to investigate biomineralization response of ancient coccolithophores to climate change. Here we show that the two dominant coccolithophore taxa across the Paleocene-Eocene Thermal Maximum (PETM) OA global warming event (~56 million years ago) exhibited morphological response to environmental change and both showed reduced calcification rates. However, only Coccolithus pelagicus exhibits a transient thinning of coccoliths, immediately before the PETM, that may have been OA-induced. Changing coccolith thickness may affect calcite production more significantly in the dominant modern species Emiliania huxleyi, but, overall, these PETM records indicate that the environmental factors that govern taxonomic composition and growth rate will most strongly influence coccolithophore calcification response to anthropogenic change.

  5. Coccolithophore calcification response to past ocean acidification and climate change

    PubMed Central

    O’Dea, Sarah A.; Gibbs, Samantha J.; Bown, Paul R.; Young, Jeremy R.; Poulton, Alex J.; Newsam, Cherry; Wilson, Paul A.

    2014-01-01

    Anthropogenic carbon dioxide emissions are forcing rapid ocean chemistry changes and causing ocean acidification (OA), which is of particular significance for calcifying organisms, including planktonic coccolithophores. Detailed analysis of coccolithophore skeletons enables comparison of calcite production in modern and fossil cells in order to investigate biomineralization response of ancient coccolithophores to climate change. Here we show that the two dominant coccolithophore taxa across the Paleocene–Eocene Thermal Maximum (PETM) OA global warming event (~56 million years ago) exhibited morphological response to environmental change and both showed reduced calcification rates. However, only Coccolithus pelagicus exhibits a transient thinning of coccoliths, immediately before the PETM, that may have been OA-induced. Changing coccolith thickness may affect calcite production more significantly in the dominant modern species Emiliania huxleyi, but, overall, these PETM records indicate that the environmental factors that govern taxonomic composition and growth rate will most strongly influence coccolithophore calcification response to anthropogenic change. PMID:25399967

  6. Adaptation potential of European agriculture in response to climate change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Moore, Frances C.; Lobell, David B.

    2014-07-01

    Projecting the impacts of climate change on agriculture requires knowing or assuming how farmers will adapt. However, empirical estimates of the effectiveness of this private adaptation are scarce and the sensitivity of impact assessments to adaptation assumptions is not well understood. Here we assess the potential effectiveness of private farmer adaptation in Europe by jointly estimating both short-run and long-run response functions using time-series and cross-sectional variation in subnational yield and profit data. The difference between the impacts of climate change projected using the short-run (limited adaptation) and long-run (substantial adaptation) response curves can be interpreted as the private adaptation potential. We find high adaptation potential for maize to future warming but large negative effects and only limited adaptation potential for wheat and barley. Overall, agricultural profits could increase slightly under climate change if farmers adapt but could decrease in many areas if there is no adaptation. Decomposing the variance in 2040 projected yields and farm profits using an ensemble of 13 climate model runs, we find that the rate at which farmers will adapt to rising temperatures is an important source of uncertainty.

  7. Climate change and biological invasions: evidence, expectations, and response options.

    PubMed

    Hulme, Philip E

    2016-05-31

    integrates bioclimatic suitability and population-level demographic rates but also simulation of landscape-level processes (e.g. dispersal, land-use change, host/habitat distribution, non-climatic edaphic constraints). In terms of invasive alien species that have known economic or biodiversity impacts, the taxa that are likely to be the most responsive are plant pathogens and insect pests of agricultural crops. However, the extent to which climate adaptation strategies lead to new crops, altered rotations, and different farming practices (e.g. irrigation, fertilization) will all shape the potential agricultural impacts of alien species. The greatest uncertainty in the effects of climate change on biological invasions exists with identifying the future character of new species introductions and predicting ecosystem impacts. Two complementary strategies may work under these conditions of high uncertainty: (i) prioritise ecosystems in terms of their perceived vulnerability to climate change and prevent ingress or expansion of alien species therein that may exacerbate problems; (ii) target those ecosystem already threatened by alien species and implement management to prevent the situation deteriorating under climate change.

  8. Modelling hydrological responses of Nerbioi River Basin to Climate Change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mendizabal, Maddalen; Moncho, Roberto; Chust, Guillem; Torp, Peter

    2010-05-01

    Future climate change will affect aquatic systems on various pathways. Regarding the hydrological cycle, which is a very important pathway, changes in hydrometeorological variables (air temperature, precipitation, evapotranspiration) in first order impact discharges. The fourth report assessment of the Intergovernmental Panel for Climate Change indicates there is evidence that the recent warming of the climate system would result in more frequent extreme precipitation events, increased winter flood likelihoods, increased and widespread melting of snow and ice, longer and more widespread droughts, and rising sea level. Available research and climate model outputs indicate a range of hydrological impacts with likely to very likely probabilities (67 to 99%). For example, it is likely that up to 20% of the world population will live in areas where river flood potential could increase by the 2080s. In Spain, within the Atlantic basin, the hydrological variability will increase in the future due to the intensification of the positive phase of the North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO) index. This might cause flood frequency decreases, but its magnitude does not decrease. The generation of flood, its duration and magnitude are closely linked to changes in winter precipitation. The climatic conditions and relief of the Iberian Peninsula favour the generation of floods. In Spain, floods had historically strong socio-economic impacts, with more than 1525 victims in the past five decades. This upward trend of hydrological variability is expected to remain in the coming decades (medium uncertainty) when the intensification of the positive phase of the NAO index (MMA, 2006) is considered. In order to adapt or minimize climate change impacts in water resources, it is necessary to use climate projections as well as hydrological modelling tools. The main objective of this paper is to evaluate and assess the hydrological response to climate changes in flow conditions in Nerbioi river

  9. Evolution of plasticity and adaptive responses to climate change along climate gradients.

    PubMed

    Kingsolver, Joel G; Buckley, Lauren B

    2017-08-16

    The relative contributions of phenotypic plasticity and adaptive evolution to the responses of species to recent and future climate change are poorly understood. We combine recent (1960-2010) climate and phenotypic data with microclimate, heat balance, demographic and evolutionary models to address this issue for a montane butterfly, Colias eriphyle, along an elevational gradient. Our focal phenotype, wing solar absorptivity, responds plastically to developmental (pupal) temperatures and plays a central role in thermoregulatory adaptation in adults. Here, we show that both the phenotypic and adaptive consequences of plasticity vary with elevation. Seasonal changes in weather generate seasonal variation in phenotypic selection on mean and plasticity of absorptivity, especially at lower elevations. In response to climate change in the past 60 years, our models predict evolutionary declines in mean absorptivity (but little change in plasticity) at high elevations, and evolutionary increases in plasticity (but little change in mean) at low elevation. The importance of plasticity depends on the magnitude of seasonal variation in climate relative to interannual variation. Our results suggest that selection and evolution of both trait means and plasticity can contribute to adaptive response to climate change in this system. They also illustrate how plasticity can facilitate rather than retard adaptive evolutionary responses to directional climate change in seasonal environments. © 2017 The Author(s).

  10. The evolutionary consequence of the individualistic response to climate change.

    PubMed

    Stewart, J R

    2009-12-01

    The Quaternary fossil record has abundant evidence for ecologically nonanalogue communities made up of combinations of modern taxa not seen in sympatry today. A brief review of the literature detailing these nonanalogue communities is given with a discussion of their various proposed causes. The individualistic, Gleasonian, response of species to climate and environmental change is favoured by many. The degree to which communities are nonanalogue appears to increase with greater time depth, and this progressive process is a necessary outcome of the individualistic response of species to climate change through time. In addition, it is noted that populations within species, as well as the species as a whole, respond individualistically. This paper proposes that many elements of nonanalogue communities are extinct populations, which may explain their environmentally anomalous combinations. These extinct populations are, by definition, lineages without descendents. It is further proposed that the differential extinction of populations, as a result of continuous ecological reassembly, could amount to a significant evolutionary phenomenon.

  11. National Forest management options in response to climate change

    Treesearch

    Forest Service U.S. Department of Agriculture

    2009-01-01

    The effect of climate change on ecosystem structure, function, and services will depend on the ecosystem's degree of sensitivity to climate change, the natural ability of plants and animals to adapt, and the availability of effective management options. Sensitivity to climate change is a function of ecosystem health and environmental stresses such as air pollution...

  12. Interdependency of tropical marine ecosystems in response to climate change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Saunders, Megan I.; Leon, Javier X.; Callaghan, David P.; Roelfsema, Chris M.; Hamylton, Sarah; Brown, Christopher J.; Baldock, Tom; Golshani, Aliasghar; Phinn, Stuart R.; Lovelock, Catherine E.; Hoegh-Guldberg, Ove; Woodroffe, Colin D.; Mumby, Peter J.

    2014-08-01

    Ecosystems are linked within landscapes by the physical and biological processes they mediate. In such connected landscapes, the response of one ecosystem to climate change could have profound consequences for neighbouring systems. Here, we report the first quantitative predictions of interdependencies between ecosystems in response to climate change. In shallow tropical marine ecosystems, coral reefs shelter lagoons from incoming waves, allowing seagrass meadows to thrive. Deepening water over coral reefs from sea-level rise results in larger, more energetic waves traversing the reef into the lagoon, potentially generating hostile conditions for seagrass. However, growth of coral reef such that the relative water depth is maintained could mitigate negative effects of sea-level rise on seagrass. Parameterizing physical and biological models for Lizard Island, Great Barrier Reef, Australia, we find negative effects of sea-level rise on seagrass before the middle of this century given reasonable rates of reef growth. Rates of vertical carbonate accretion typical of modern reef flats (up to 3 mm yr-1) will probably be insufficient to maintain suitable conditions for reef lagoon seagrass under moderate to high greenhouse gas emissions scenarios by 2100. Accounting for interdependencies in ecosystem responses to climate change is challenging, but failure to do so results in inaccurate predictions of habitat extent in the future.

  13. Wetlands Response to Climate Change across Susquehanna River Basin

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Duffy, C.; Yu, X.; Bhatt, G.; Kumar, M.

    2011-12-01

    The Susquehanna River Basin (SRB) lies in the northeastern United States and contains a mosaic of wetlands that range from permanently wet to temporary embedded in a landscape matrix of natural deciduous forest and agriculture. This study explores the prospects for SRB wetlands under modified hydrologic processes induced due to climatic change. Five mesoscale watersheds: Little Juniata River (560 sq. km.), Mahantango Creek (420 sq. km.), Young Womans Creek (120 sq. km.), Muddy Creek (344 sq. km.), and Lackawanna River (860 sq. km.) were selected as representative watersheds to include variability in climate, topography, soil, geomorphology, and land cover across SRB. We explored the broad spatial and temporal patterns across these watersheds between climate and wetland health using groundwater predictions from Penn State Integrated Hydrologic Modeling System (PIHM) -- a spatially distributed fully-coupled physics-based model. Near present (2004-2010) hourly climate data (precipitation, temperature, relative humidity, vapor pressure, wind velocity and solar radiation) were obtained from Phase 2 of the North American Land Data Assimilation System (NLDAS-2), climate reanalysis product. The predicted wetland locations were validated against the National Wetland Inventory. We analyzed the effect of spatial and temporal variability in hydrologic states such as streams, groundwater, and evaporative and hydrologic fluxes on the wetland hydrology. To predict the impacts of climate change on the health of the wetland, meteorological data for two 20 year climate periods (History: 1979-1998 and Scenario: 2046-2065) from Meteorological Research Institute's GCM were used as model forcing. The scenarios output showed different responses across the wetlands in the river basin. The key to this study is that a high resolution spatial and temporal model can resolve the coupled effects of wetlands in the context of complete mesoscale watershed simulations.

  14. The demographic response to Holocene climate change in the Sahara

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Manning, Katie; Timpson, Adrian

    2014-10-01

    The timing and development of Holocene human occupation in the now hyperarid Sahara has major implications for understanding links between climate change, demography and cultural adaptation. Here we use summed probability distributions from 3287 calibrated 14C dates from 1011 archaeological sites to demonstrate a major and rapid demographic shift between 10,500 and 5500 years BP. This event corresponds with the African Humid Period (AHP) and is sub-continental in scale, indicating climate as the prime factor driving broad-scale population dynamics in northern Africa. Furthermore, by providing a high temporal resolution proxy for effective carrying capacity our population curve offers an independent estimate of environmental change in northern Africa, indicating a temporal delay in the terrestrial response to atmospheric climate change. These results highlight the degree to which human demography is a function of environment at the appropriate scale of observation in both time and space and sheds important new light on the social response to global environmental change.

  15. Complex responses of insect phenology to climate change.

    PubMed

    Forrest, Jessica Rk

    2016-10-01

    Insect phenologies are changing in response to climate warming. Shifts toward earlier seasonal activity are widespread; however, responses of insect phenology to warming are often more complex. Many species have prolonged their activity periods; others have shown delays. Furthermore, because of interspecific differences in temperature sensitivity, warming can increase or decrease synchronization between insects and their food plants and natural enemies. Here, I review recent findings in three areas-shifts in phenology, changes in voltinism, and altered species interactions-and highlight counterintuitive responses to warming caused by the particularities of insect life cycles. Throughout, I emphasize how an appreciation of the evolutionary processes shaping insect life histories is necessary to forecast changes in insect phenology and their demographic consequences.

  16. Climate Change

    MedlinePlus

    ... in a place over a period of time. Climate change is major change in temperature, rainfall, snow, or ... by natural factors or by human activities. Today climate changes are occurring at an increasingly rapid rate. Climate ...

  17. Farmer's response to changing climate in North East India

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    De, Utpal Kumar

    2015-02-01

    Diversification of land use in the cultivation of various crops provides an alternative way to moderate the climate risk. By choosing alternative crops that are resilient to various weather parameters, farmers can reduce the crop damage and achieve optimum output from their limited land resources. Apart from other adaptation measures, crop diversity can reflect farmers' response towards changing climate uncertainty. This paper tries to examine the changing climatic condition through spatio-temporal variation of two important weather variables (precipitation and temperature) in the largest North-East Indian state, Assam, since 1950. It is examined by the variation in crop diversification index. We have used (1) Herfindahl Index for measuring degree of diversification and (2) locational quotient for measuring the changes in the regional crop concentration. The results show that, in almost all the districts, crop specialization has been taking place slowly and that happened mostly in the last phase of our study. The hilly and backward districts recorded more diversification but towards lower value crops. It goes against the normal feature of crop diversification where farmers diversify in favour of high value crops. Employing ordinary least squares method and/or Fixed Effect model, irrigation is found to have significant impact on crop diversification; while the flood plain zones and hill zones are found to have better progress in this regard, which has been due to the survival necessity of poor farmers living the zone. Thus crop diversity does not reflect very significant response from the farmers' side towards changing weather factors (except rainfall) though they have significant impact on the productivity of various crops, and thus profitability. The study thus suggests the necessity for rapid and suitable diversification as alternative climate change mitigation in the long run.

  18. [Forest litter decomposition and its responses to global climate change].

    PubMed

    Yang, Wan-Qin; Deng, Ren-Ju; Zhang, Jian

    2007-12-01

    Litter decomposition is one of the important processes in forest ecosystem, which is controlled by both biotic and abiotic factors such as climate, litter quality, and soil organisms. Up to now, numerous studies have been made on the dynamics of aboveground litter in different forest ecosystems, nutrient release during its decomposition, and effects of biotic and abiotic factors on the decomposition, but less information has been reported on the decomposition of belowground forest litter. Recently, the responses of forest litter decomposition to global climate change characterized by elevated atmospheric CO2 concentration and temperature have got worldwide concern, but there remains uncertainty in research results. In the further study, more attention should be paid on the contribution of forest litter decomposition to soil organic carbon sequestration, the physical, chemical and biological processes of below- and above-ground litter decomposition, the responses of forest litter decomposition to the ecological factors (e.g. seasonal freeze-thaw cycle and drying-rewetting cycle) and their interactions, and the mechanisms of litter (especially belowground litter) decomposition responses to global climate change.

  19. Responses of vegetation growth to climate change in china

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Z.; Zhou, T.

    2015-04-01

    Global warming-related climate changes have significantly impacted the growth of terrestrial vegetation. Quantifying the spatiotemporal characteristic of the vegetation's response to climate is crucial for assessing the potential impacts of climate change on vegetation. In this study, we employed the normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) and the standardized precipitation evapotranspiration index (SPEI) that was calculated for various time scales (1 to 12 months) from monthly records of mean temperature and precipitation totals using 511 meteorological stations in China to study the response of vegetation types to droughts. We separated the NDVI into 12 time series (one per month) and also used the SPEI of 12 droughts time scales to make the correlation. The results showed that the differences exist in various vegetation types. For needle-leaved forest, broadleaf forest and shrubland, they responded to droughts at long time scales (9 to 12 months). For grassland, meadow and cultivated vegetation, they responded to droughts at short time scales (1 to 5months). The positive correlations were mostly found in arid and sub-arid environments where soil water was a primary constraining factor for plant growth, and the negative correlations always existed in humid environments where temperature and radiation played significant roles in vegetation growth. Further spatial analysis indicated that the positive correlations were primarily found in northern China, especially in northwestern China, which is a region that always has water deficit, and the negative correlations were found in southern China, especially in southeastern China, that is a region has water surplus most of the year. The disclosed patterns of spatiotemporal responses to droughts are important for studying the impact of climate change to vegetation growth.

  20. A conceptual model of plant responses to climate with implications for monitoring ecosystem change

    Treesearch

    C. David. Bertelsen

    2013-01-01

    Climate change is affecting natural systems on a global scale and is particularly rapid in the Southwest. It is important to identify impacts of a changing climate before ecosystems become unstable. Recognizing plant responses to climate change requires knowledge of both species present and plant responses to variable climatic conditions. A conceptual model derived...

  1. Social responses to climate change: Political cultures and social plasticity

    SciTech Connect

    Pendergraft, C.A.

    1997-12-31

    Working Group III of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change cautiously observes that {open_quotes}The value of better information about climate change processes and impacts and society`s responses to them is likely to be great.{close_quotes} Global-scale problems involve an infinite number of social complexities, so a fundamental analytic need is a metric to facilitate cross-cultural comparison of sets of attitudes or worldviews relevant to coping with climate change. Enhanced climate change is a salient example of the synergistic character of anthropogenic and natural processes, but the very fact that not everyone sees {open_quotes}anthropogenic{close_quotes} and {open_quotes}natural{close_quotes} as dichotomous, or agrees on the implications of either alternative, indicates the presence of competing worldviews. There is a consensus that a high level of environmental quality is a collective good, so a general failure to provide it needs explaining. Is the problem inherent to collective action or is it a function of the global politico-economic system? The premises of some worldviews lead to doubt that collective action problems can be resolved in a system dominated by sovereign states, and insist that nothing short of radical systemic revision is required. Other premises produce fear of concentrations of power in supranational or international organizations. What elements predispose people and groups to accept or reject one or the other of these views? This research uses cultural theory to explore socioeconomic and political implications of diverse worldviews. Responses of a sample of over 500 people to politically and environmentally relevant statements are classified, scaled and clustered. Implications for social adaptability, or plasticity, are suggested.

  2. Evolutionary responses to climate change in a range expanding plant.

    PubMed

    Macel, Mirka; Dostálek, Tomáš; Esch, Sonja; Bucharová, Anna; van Dam, Nicole M; Tielbörger, Katja; Verhoeven, Koen J F; Münzbergová, Zuzana

    2017-06-01

    To understand the biological effects of climate change, it is essential to take into account species' evolutionary responses to their changing environments. Ongoing climate change is resulting in species shifting their geographical distribution ranges poleward. We tested whether a successful range expanding plant has rapidly adapted to the regional conditions in its novel range, and whether adaptation could be driven by herbivores. Furthermore, we investigated if enemy release occurred in the newly colonized areas and whether plant origins differed in herbivore resistance. Plants were cloned and reciprocally transplanted between three experimental sites across the range. Effects of herbivores on plant performance were tested by individually caging plants with either open or closed cages. There was no indication of (regional) adaptation to abiotic conditions. Plants originating from the novel range were always larger than plants from the core distribution at all experimental sites, with or without herbivory. Herbivore damage was highest and not lowest at the experimental sites in the novel range, suggesting no release from enemy impact. Genotypes from the core were more damaged compared to genotypes from newly colonized areas at the most northern site in the novel range, which was dominated by generalist slug herbivory. We also detected subtle shifts in chemical defenses between the plant origins. Genotypes from the novel range had more inducible defenses. Our results suggest that plants that are expanding their range with climate change may evolve increased vigor and altered herbivore resistance in their new range, analogous to invasive plants.

  3. The acceptability of climate change in agricultural communities: comparing responses across variability and change.

    PubMed

    Raymond, Christopher M; Spoehr, John

    2013-01-30

    This study examined how the terms used to describe climate change influence landholder acceptability judgements and attitudes toward climate change at the local scale. Telephone surveys were conducted with landholders from viticultural (n = 97) or cereal growing (n = 195) backgrounds in rural South Australia. A variety of descriptive and inferential statistics were used to examine the influence of human-induced climate change and winter/spring drying trend terms on adaptation responses and uncertainties surrounding climate change science. We found that the terms used to describe climate change leads to significant differences in adaptation response and levels of scepticism surrounding climate change in rural populations. For example, those respondents who accepted human induced climate change as a reality were significantly more likely to invest in technologies to sow crops earlier or increase the amount of water stored or harvested on their properties than respondents who accepted the winter/spring drying trend as a reality. The results have implications for the targeting of climate change science messages to both rural landholders and communities of practice involved in climate change adaptation planning and implementation.

  4. Biocrust spectral response as affected by changing climatic conditions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rodriguez-Caballero, Emilio; Guirado, Emilio; Escribano, Paula; Reyes, Andres; Weber, Bettina

    2017-04-01

    Drylands are characterized by scarce vegetation coverage and low rates of biological activity, both constrained by water scarcity. Under these conditions, biocrusts form key players of ecosystem functioning. They comprise complex poikilohydric communities of cyanobacteria, algae, lichens and bryophytes together with heterotrophic bacteria, archaea and fungi, which cover the uppermost soil layer. Biocrusts can cope with prolonged phases of drought, being rapidly re-activated when water becomes available again. Upon reactivation, biocrusts almost immediately turn green, fixing atmospheric carbon and nitrogen and increasing ecosystem productivity. However, due to their inconspicuous growth they have only rarely been analysed and spatially and temporally continuous information on their response to water pulses is missing. These data are particularly important under changing climatic conditions predicting an increase in aridity and variations in precipitation patterns within most of the dryland regions. In the present study, we used multi-temporal series of NDVI obtained from LANDSAT images to analyze biocrust and vegetation response to water pulses within the South African Succulent Karoo and we predicted their future response under different climate change scenarios. The results showed that biocrust and vegetation greenness are controlled by aridity, solar radiation and soil water content, showing similar annual patterns, with minimum values during dry periods that increased within the rainy season and decreased again after the onset of drought. However, biocrusts responded faster to water availability and turned green almost immediately after small rains, producing a small NDVI peak only few days after rainfall, whereas more time was needed for vegetation to grow new green tissue. However, once the photosynthetic tissue of vegetation was restored, it caused the highest increase of NDVI values after the rain. Predicted changes in precipitation patterns and aridity

  5. Landscape fragmentation affects responses of avian communities to climate change.

    PubMed

    Jarzyna, Marta A; Porter, William F; Maurer, Brian A; Zuckerberg, Benjamin; Finley, Andrew O

    2015-08-01

    Forecasting the consequences of climate change is contingent upon our understanding of the relationship between biodiversity patterns and climatic variability. While the impacts of climate change on individual species have been well-documented, there is a paucity of studies on climate-mediated changes in community dynamics. Our objectives were to investigate the relationship between temporal turnover in avian biodiversity and changes in climatic conditions and to assess the role of landscape fragmentation in affecting this relationship. We hypothesized that community turnover would be highest in regions experiencing the most pronounced changes in climate and that these patterns would be reduced in human-dominated landscapes. To test this hypothesis, we quantified temporal turnover in avian communities over a 20-year period using data from the New York State Breeding Atlases collected during 1980-1985 and 2000-2005. We applied Bayesian spatially varying intercept models to evaluate the relationship between temporal turnover and temporal trends in climatic conditions and landscape fragmentation. We found that models including interaction terms between climate change and landscape fragmentation were superior to models without the interaction terms, suggesting that the relationship between avian community turnover and changes in climatic conditions was affected by the level of landscape fragmentation. Specifically, we found weaker associations between temporal turnover and climatic change in regions with prevalent habitat fragmentation. We suggest that avian communities in fragmented landscapes are more robust to climate change than communities found in contiguous habitats because they are comprised of species with wider thermal niches and thus are less susceptible to shifts in climatic variability. We conclude that highly fragmented regions are likely to undergo less pronounced changes in composition and structure of faunal communities as a result of climate change

  6. Global climate change: The USAID response. A report to congress

    SciTech Connect

    1994-06-01

    USAID`s new Global Climate Change Strategy (GCCS) is designed to support the fundamental objectives of the FCCC as stated above. The goal of the GCCS is: To contribute to global efforts to stabilize greenhouse gas concentrations and to assist countries to adapt to the adverse effects of climate change, while maintaining economic growth in developing and post-communist countries. The report will concentrate on USAID`s global greenhouse gas assessment and mitigation program. Mitigation methods, particularly in the energy sector, are generally applicable throughout the world, and therefore it is possible to address this dimension of the climate change problem on a global climate change basis.

  7. Differentiated Response of Snowpack to Climate Change at Local Scale

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pons, M.; López Moreno, J. I.; Rosas-Casals, M.; Jover, E.

    2014-12-01

    Local factors such as topography, aspect, elevation or local wind can significantly affect the spatial distribution of snow. This study intends to understand the effect of these factors and model a differentiated response of snowpack to climate change at small scale. In order to accomplish this objective, a network of wind, temperature and humidity sensors has been deployed in two different ski areas of the Pyrenees to monitor and analyze the effect of local factors on these variables. Moreover, snow depth and density, snowmaking working and time-lapse imagery of slopes will be analyzed during a winter season in order to better understand the snowpack changes and distribution due to local factors and the technical work on the ski resorts. The main aim of this study is to better understand the differentiated response of the snowpack at small scale considering local factors in order to improve and enhance the efficiency of the present daily management for example in ski resort areas and the planning of future adaptation strategies to climate change.

  8. Stationary monitoring of glacier response to climate change in China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ren, Jiawen; Li, Zhongqin; Qin, Xiang; He, Yuanqing; He, Xiaobo; Li, Huilin

    2016-04-01

    At present, there are about 48571 glaciers with a total area of about 51.8×103 km2 and a volume of about 5.6×103 km3 in China. They are distributed widely in the high mountains in and surrounding the Tibetan Plateau and other high mountains such as Tianshan, Altay and Pamir. In view of differences in climatic conditions and glacier types, stationary monitoring of the glacier variations has been ongoing in different regions in order to investigate the glacier response to climate change. The monitoring results show that all the monitoring glaciers have been in retreat during the past decades and especially since 1990's the retreat rate has an accelerating trend. The accumulative mass balance is much negative and has a large annual variability for the monsoonal maritime glaciers in comparison with the continental and sub-continental glaciers. Under climate warming background, the acceleration of glacier melting is mainly attributed to rise in air temperature, ice temperature augment and albedo reduction of glacier surface. Particularly, the albedo reduction has a positive feedback effect on the glacier melting. Based on long term observation of glacier variations and physical properties, a simple dynamics model is coupled with mass balance modeling to make a projection of a typical glacier change in future. The primary modeling results suggest that the glacier will continue in shrinkage until vanishing within 50-90 years.

  9. Warming Experiments Underpredict Plant Phenological Responses to Climate Change

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wolkovich, E. M.; Cook, B. I.; Allen, J. M.; Crimmins, T. M.; Betancourt, J. L.; Travers, S. E.; Pau, S.; Regetz, J.; Davies, T. J.; Kraft, N. J. B.; Ault, T. R.; Bolmgren, K.; Mazer, S. J.; McCabe, G. J.; McGill, B. J.; Parmesan, C.; Salamin, N.; Schwartz, M. D.; Cleland, E. E.

    2012-01-01

    Warming experiments are increasingly relied on to estimate plant responses to global climate change. For experiments to provide meaningful predictions of future responses, they should reflect the empirical record of responses to temperature variability and recent warming, including advances in the timing of flowering and leafing. We compared phenology (the timing of recurring life history events) in observational studies and warming experiments spanning four continents and 1,634 plant species using a common measure of temperature sensitivity (change in days per degree Celsius). We show that warming experiments underpredict advances in the timing of flowering and leafing by 8.5-fold and 4.0-fold, respectively, compared with long-term observations. For species that were common to both study types, the experimental results did not match the observational data in sign or magnitude. The observational data also showed that species that flower earliest in the spring have the highest temperature sensitivities, but this trend was not reflected in the experimental data. These significant mismatches seem to be unrelated to the study length or to the degree of manipulated warming in experiments. The discrepancy between experiments and observations, however, could arise from complex interactions among multiple drivers in the observational data, or it could arise from remediable artefacts in the experiments that result in lower irradiance and drier soils, thus dampening the phenological responses to manipulated warming. Our results introduce uncertainty into ecosystem models that are informed solely by experiments and suggest that responses to climate change that are predicted using such models should be re-evaluated.

  10. Warming experiments underpredict plant phenological responses to climate change

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Wolkovich, Elizabeth M.; Cook, Benjamin I.; Allen, Jenica M.; Crimmins, Theresa M.; Betancourt, Julio L.; Travers, Steven E.; Pau, Stephanie; Regetz, James; Davies, T. Jonathan; Kraft, Nathan J.B.; Ault, Toby R.; Bolmgren, Kjell; Mazer, Susan J.; McCabe, Gregory J.; McGill, Brian J.; Parmesan, Camille; Salamin, Nicolas; Schwartz, Mark D.; Cleland, Elsa E.

    2012-01-01

    Warming experiments are increasingly relied on to estimate plant responses to global climate change. For experiments to provide meaningful predictions of future responses, they should reflect the empirical record of responses to temperature variability and recent warming, including advances in the timing of flowering and leafing. We compared phenology (the timing of recurring life history events) in observational studies and warming experiments spanning four continents and 1,634 plant species using a common measure of temperature sensitivity (change in days per degree Celsius). We show that warming experiments underpredict advances in the timing of flowering and leafing by 8.5-fold and 4.0-fold, respectively, compared with long-term observations. For species that were common to both study types, the experimental results did not match the observational data in sign or magnitude. The observational data also showed that species that flower earliest in the spring have the highest temperature sensitivities, but this trend was not reflected in the experimental data. These significant mismatches seem to be unrelated to the study length or to the degree of manipulated warming in experiments. The discrepancy between experiments and observations, however, could arise from complex interactions among multiple drivers in the observational data, or it could arise from remediable artefacts in the experiments that result in lower irradiance and drier soils, thus dampening the phenological responses to manipulated warming. Our results introduce uncertainty into ecosystem models that are informed solely by experiments and suggest that responses to climate change that are predicted using such models should be re-evaluated.

  11. Warming experiments underpredict plant phenological responses to climate change.

    PubMed

    Wolkovich, E M; Cook, B I; Allen, J M; Crimmins, T M; Betancourt, J L; Travers, S E; Pau, S; Regetz, J; Davies, T J; Kraft, N J B; Ault, T R; Bolmgren, K; Mazer, S J; McCabe, G J; McGill, B J; Parmesan, C; Salamin, N; Schwartz, M D; Cleland, E E

    2012-05-02

    Warming experiments are increasingly relied on to estimate plant responses to global climate change. For experiments to provide meaningful predictions of future responses, they should reflect the empirical record of responses to temperature variability and recent warming, including advances in the timing of flowering and leafing. We compared phenology (the timing of recurring life history events) in observational studies and warming experiments spanning four continents and 1,634 plant species using a common measure of temperature sensitivity (change in days per degree Celsius). We show that warming experiments underpredict advances in the timing of flowering and leafing by 8.5-fold and 4.0-fold, respectively, compared with long-term observations. For species that were common to both study types, the experimental results did not match the observational data in sign or magnitude. The observational data also showed that species that flower earliest in the spring have the highest temperature sensitivities, but this trend was not reflected in the experimental data. These significant mismatches seem to be unrelated to the study length or to the degree of manipulated warming in experiments. The discrepancy between experiments and observations, however, could arise from complex interactions among multiple drivers in the observational data, or it could arise from remediable artefacts in the experiments that result in lower irradiance and drier soils, thus dampening the phenological responses to manipulated warming. Our results introduce uncertainty into ecosystem models that are informed solely by experiments and suggest that responses to climate change that are predicted using such models should be re-evaluated.

  12. Warming experiments underpredict plant phenological responses to climate change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wolkovich, E.; Cook, B.; Forecasting Phenology Working Group

    2012-04-01

    Warming experiments are relied on increasingly to estimate plant responses to global change. For experiments to provide meaningful predictions of future responses, they should reflect the empirical record of responses to temperature variability and recent warming, including advances in timing of flowering and leafout. We compared observational phenology studies with warming experiments spanning four continents and 1,634 species. Using a common measure of temperature sensitivity (change in days per degree C), we show that experiments underpredict advances in timing of flowering and leafing by 8.5X and 4.0X, respectively, compared to long-term observations. For species common to both study types, experimental results did not match observational data in sign or magnitude. The observational data also show highest sensitivity for species that flower earliest in the spring, but this trend was not reflected in the experiments. These significant mismatches appear unrelated to study length or to the degree of manipulated warming in experiments. The discrepancy between experiments and observations, however, could arise from complex interactions among multiple drivers in observational data or from remediable artifacts in the experiments that reduce irradiance, dry soils, and thus dampen phenological responses to manipulated warming. Our results introduce uncertainty in ecosystem models informed solely by experiments, and suggest predicted responses to climate change from such models should be re-evaluated.

  13. Phenotypic clines, energy balances and ecological responses to climate change.

    PubMed

    Buckley, Lauren B; Nufio, César R; Kingsolver, Joel G

    2014-01-01

    The Metabolic Theory of Ecology has renewed interest in using energetics to scale across levels of ecological organization. Can scaling from individual phenotypes to population dynamics provides insight into why species have shifted their phenologies, abundances and distributions idiosyncratically in response to recent climate change? We consider how the energetic implications of phenotypes may scale to understand population and species level responses to climate change using four focal grasshopper species along an elevation gradient in Colorado. We use a biophysical model to translate phenotypes and environmental conditions into estimates of body temperatures. We measure thermal tolerances and preferences and metabolic rates to assess rates of energy use and acquisition. Body mass declines along the elevation gradient for all species, but mass-specific metabolic rates increases only modestly. We find interspecific differences in both overall thermal tolerances and preferences and in the variation of these metrics along the elevation gradient. The more dispersive species exhibit significantly higher thermal tolerance and preference consistent with much of their range spanning hot, low elevation areas. When integrating these metrics to consider metabolic constraints, we find that energetic costs decrease along the elevation gradient due to decreasing body size and temperature. Opportunities for energy acquisition, as reflected by the proportion of time that falls within a grasshopper's thermal tolerance range, peak at mid elevations. We discuss methods for translating these energetic metrics into population dynamics. Quantifying energy balances and allocation offers a viable approach for predicting how populations will respond to climate change and the consequences for species composed of populations that may be locally adapted.

  14. Climate Change and Societal Response: Livelihoods, Communities, and the Environment

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Molnar, Joseph J.

    2010-01-01

    Climate change may be considered a natural disaster evolving in slow motion on a global scale. Increasing storm intensities, shifting rainfall patterns, melting glaciers, rising sea levels, and other manifold alterations are being experienced around the world. Climate has never been constant in any location, but human-induced changes associated…

  15. Climate Change and Societal Response: Livelihoods, Communities, and the Environment

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Molnar, Joseph J.

    2010-01-01

    Climate change may be considered a natural disaster evolving in slow motion on a global scale. Increasing storm intensities, shifting rainfall patterns, melting glaciers, rising sea levels, and other manifold alterations are being experienced around the world. Climate has never been constant in any location, but human-induced changes associated…

  16. Global Responses to Potential Climate Change: A Simulation.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Williams, Mary Louise; Mowry, George

    This interdisciplinary five-day unit provides students with an understanding of the issues in the debate on global climate change. Introductory lessons enhance understanding of the "greenhouse gases" and their sources with possible global effects of climate change. Students then roleplay negotiators from 10 nations in a simulation of the…

  17. A Systems Perspective on Responses to Climate Change

    EPA Science Inventory

    The science of climate change integrates many scientific fields to explain and predict the complex effects of greenhouse gas concentrations on the planet’s energy balance, weather patterns, and ecosystems as well as economic and social systems. A changing climate requires respons...

  18. A Systems Perspective on Responses to Climate Change

    EPA Science Inventory

    The science of climate change integrates many scientific fields to explain and predict the complex effects of greenhouse gas concentrations on the planet’s energy balance, weather patterns, and ecosystems as well as economic and social systems. A changing climate requires respons...

  19. Global Responses to Potential Climate Change: A Simulation.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Williams, Mary Louise; Mowry, George

    This interdisciplinary five-day unit provides students with an understanding of the issues in the debate on global climate change. Introductory lessons enhance understanding of the "greenhouse gases" and their sources with possible global effects of climate change. Students then roleplay negotiators from 10 nations in a simulation of the…

  20. Assessing climate change beliefs: Response effects of question wording and response alternatives.

    PubMed

    Greenhill, Murni; Leviston, Zoe; Leonard, Rosemary; Walker, Iain

    2014-11-01

    To date, there is no 'gold standard' on how to best measure public climate change beliefs. We report a study (N = 897) testing four measures of climate change causation beliefs, drawn from four sources: the CSIRO, Griffith University, the Gallup poll, and the Newspoll. We found that question wording influences the outcome of beliefs reported. Questions that did not allow respondents to choose the option of believing in an equal mix of natural and anthropogenic climate change obtained different results to those that included the option. Age and belief groups were found to be important predictors of how consistent people were in reporting their beliefs. Response consistency gave some support to past findings suggesting climate change beliefs reflect something deeper in the individual belief system. Each belief question was assessed against five criterion variables commonly used in climate change literature. Implications for future studies are discussed.

  1. Modeling transient response of forests to climate change.

    PubMed

    Dale, Virginia H; Tharp, M Lynn; Lannom, Karen O; Hodges, Donald G

    2010-03-15

    Our hypothesis is that a high diversity of dominant life forms in Tennessee forests conveys resilience to disturbance such as climate change. Because of uncertainty in climate change and their effects, three climate change scenarios for 2030 and 2080 from three General Circulation Models (GCMs) were used to simulate a range of potential climate conditions for the state. These climate changes derive from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) "A1B" storyline that assumes rapid global economic growth. The precipitation and temperature projections from the three GCMs for 2030 and 2080 were related to changes in five ecological provinces using the monthly record of temperature and precipitation from 1980 to 1997 for each 1km cell across the state as aggregated into the provinces. Temperatures are projected to increase in all ecological provinces in all months for all three GCMs for both 2030 and 2080. Precipitation differences from the long-term average are more complex but less striking. The forest ecosystem model LINKAGES was used to simulate conditions for five ecological provinces from 1989 to 2300. Average output projects changes in tree diversity and species composition in all ecological provinces in Tennessee with the greatest changes in the Southern Mixed Forest province. Projected declines in total tree biomass are followed by biomass recovery as species replacement occurs in stands. The Southern Mixed Forest province results in less diversity in dominant trees as well as lower overall biomass than projections for the other four provinces. The biomass and composition changes projected in this study differ from forest dynamics expected without climate change. These results suggest that biomass recovery following climate change is linked to dominant tree diversity in the southeastern forest of the US. The generality of this observation warrants further investigation, for it relates to ways that forest management may influence climate change effects.

  2. Modeling Transient Response of Forests to Climate Change

    SciTech Connect

    Dale, Virginia H; Tharp, M Lynn; Lannom, Karen O.; Hodges, Donald G

    2010-01-01

    Our hypothesis is that a high diversity of dominant life forms in Tennessee forests conveys resilience to disturbance such as climate change. Because of uncertainty in climate change and their effects, three climate change scenarios for 2030 and 2080 from three General Circulation Models (GCMs) were used to simulate a range of potential climate conditions for the state. These climate changes derive from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) A1B storyline that assumes rapid global economic growth. The precipitation and temperature projections from the three GCMs for 2030 and 2080 were related to changes in five ecological provinces using the monthly record of temperature and precipitation from 1980 to 1997 for each 1 km cell across the state as aggregated into the provinces. Temperatures are projected to increase in all ecological provinces in all months for all three GCMs for both 2030 and 2080. Precipitation differences from the long-term average are more complex but less striking. The forest ecosystem model LINKAGES was used to simulate conditions for five ecological provinces from 1989 to 2300. Average output projects changes in tree diversity and species composition in all ecological provinces in Tennessee with the greatest changes in the Southern Mixed Forest province. Projected declines in total tree biomass are followed by biomass recovery as species replacement occurs in stands. The Southern Mixed Forest province results in less diversity in dominant trees as well as lower overall biomass than projections for the other four provinces. The biomass and composition changes projected in this study differ from forest dynamics expected without climate change. These results suggest that biomass recovery following climate change is linked to dominant tree diversity in the southeastern forest of the US. The generality of this observation warrants further investigation, for it relates to ways that forest management may influence climate change effects.

  3. Anticipated water quality changes in response to climate change and potential consequences for inland fishes

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Chen, Yushun; Todd, Andrew S.; Murphy, Margaret H.; Lomnicky, Gregg

    2016-01-01

    Healthy freshwater ecosystems are a critical component of the world's economy, with a critical role in maintaining public health, inland biological diversity, and overall quality of life. Globally, our climate is changing, with air temperature and precipitation regimes deviating significantly from historical patterns. Healthy freshwater ecosystems are a critical component of the world's economy, with a critical role in maintaining public health, inland biological diversity, and overall quality of life. Globally, our climate is changing, with air temperature and precipitation regimes deviating significantly from historical patterns. Changes anticipated with climate change in the future are likely to have a profound effect on inland aquatic ecosystems through diverse pathways, including changes in water quality. In this brief article, we present an initial discussion of several of the water quality responses that can be anticipated to occur within inland water bodies with climate change and how those changes are likely to impact fishes.

  4. Bromus response to climate and projected changes with climate change [Chapter 9

    Treesearch

    Bethany A. Bradley; Caroline A. Curtis; Jeanne C. Chambers

    2016-01-01

    A prominent goal of invasive plant management is to prevent or reduce the spread of invasive species into uninvaded landscapes and regions. Monitoring and control efforts often rely on scientific knowledge of suitable habitat for the invasive species. However, rising temperatures and altered precipitation projected with climate change are likely to shift the...

  5. 77 FR 76034 - National Water Program 2012 Strategy: Response to Climate Change

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2012-12-26

    ... AGENCY National Water Program 2012 Strategy: Response to Climate Change AGENCY: Environmental Protection... publishing the final ``National Water Program 2012 Strategy: Response to Climate Change'' (2012 Strategy... light of climate change and charts key strategic actions to be taken to achieve the goals in 2012 and...

  6. Response of debris-covered glaciers to climate change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Benn, D. I.; Lindsey, N.; Kathryn, H.

    2004-12-01

    The presence of supraglacial debris strongly influences glacier ablation, and the mass balance of debris-covered glaciers differs significantly from that of clean glaciers in similar climatic settings. Predicting the response of debris-covered glaciers to climate change is important for hazard mitigation strategies in many high mountain environments, especially where temporary lakes are likely to form on stagnating glacier tongues. Accurate prediction of glacier evolution requires a robust mass balance function which incorporates the effect of debris cover. We present a new model for calculating ablation beneath supraglacial debris layer from meteorological data, based on coupling the surface energy balance and conductive heat flux through the debris layer. The model performs well in a wide range of climatic settings, and results correlate well with measured melt rates in the European Alps and Svalbard. The ablation model is used to construct theoretical mass balance curves for debris covered glaciers, providing surface boundary conditions for glacier flow models. Modelled mass balance curves display reverse gradients on glacier termini where the effect of thickening debris cover with decreasing altitude outweighs that of higher air temperatures. This explains the widely-noted tendency for debris-covered glaciers to stagnate under warming climates. When the mass balance of the glacier as a whole is negative, increasing ablation with altitude causes the lower tongue to decrease in gradient. As gradients and ice thicknesses decline, the process is reinforced by a positive feedback with velocity, so less ice is delivered to the terminal zone. Low surface gradients encourage the formation of supraglacial ponds which can grow rapidly, significantly increasing mass loss from the glacier and potentially posing flood hazards.

  7. Biogeochemical responses of shallow coastal lagoons to Climate Change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brito, A.; Newton, A.; Tett, P.; Fernandes, T.

    2009-04-01

    carefully monitored so that appropriate responses can be timely to mitigate the impacts from global change. References: Eisenreich, S.J. (2005). Climate Change and the European Water Dimension - A report to the European Water Directors. Institute for Environment and Sustainability, European Comission-Joint Research Centre. Ispra, Italy. 253pp. Kerr, R. (2008). Global warming throws some curves in the Atlantic Ocean. Science, 322, 515. IPCC (2007). Climate Change 2007: The Physical Science Basis. Contribution of Working Group I to the Fourth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change [Solomon, S., Qin, D., Manning, M., Chen, Z., Marquis, M., Averyt, K., Tignor, M., Miller, H. (eds.)]. Cambridge University Press. Cambridge, United Kingdom and New York, NY, USA, 996pp. Lloret, J., Marín, A., Marín-Guirao, L. (2008). Is coastal lagoon eutrophication likely to be aggravated by global climate change? Estuarine, Coastal and Shelf Science, 78, 403-412. Snoussi, M., Ouchani, T., Niazi, S. (2008). Vulnerability assessment of the impact of sea-level rise and flooding on the Moroccan coast: The case of the Mediterranean eastern zone. Estuarine, Coastal and Shelf Science, 77, 206-213.

  8. Adaptation responses to climate change differ between global megacities

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Georgeson, Lucien; Maslin, Mark; Poessinouw, Martyn; Howard, Steve

    2016-06-01

    Urban areas are increasingly at risk from climate change, with negative impacts predicted for human health, the economy and ecosystems. These risks require responses from cities to improve their resilience. Policymakers need to understand current adaptation spend to plan comprehensively and effectively. Through the measurement of spend in the newly defined `adaptation economy', we analyse current climate change adaptation efforts in ten megacities. In all cases, the adaptation economy remains a small part of the overall economy, representing a maximum of 0.33% of a city's gross domestic product (here referred to as GDPc). Differences in total spend are significant between cities in developed, emerging and developing countries, ranging from #15 million to #1,600 million. Comparing key subsectors, we demonstrate the differences in adaptation profiles. Developing cities have higher proportional spend on health and agriculture, whereas developed cities have higher spend on energy and water. Spend per capita and percentage of GDPc comparisons more clearly show disparities between cities. Developing country cities spend half the proportion of GDPc and significantly less per capita, suggesting that adaptation spend is driven by wealth rather than the number of vulnerable people. This indicates that current adaptation activities are insufficient in major population centres in developing and emerging economies.

  9. Venezuelan policies and responses on climate change and natural hazards

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Caponi, Claudio; Rosales, Anibal

    1992-06-01

    Venezuela is an intertropical country which has the fortune not to suffer the severities of natural hazards which are usual in other countries of this region. It is a developing country, whose economy is heavily dependent on oil production and exports. Its greenhouse gas emissions are relatively low, but it is expected that the planned industrialization development will bring an associated increase in emissions. As a nation, Venezuela has a highly developed environmental consciousness. The Ministry of environment, the first in Latin America, was created in 1977, and has been the main contributor to the national policy of Disaster Prevention and Reduction. As in many developing countries actions and responses in this regard have been rather limited in scope, and even though legislation has been developed, many problems arise for its enforcement. Several local warning systems, civil defense procedures, and infrastructural protection measures are operational, however they have not been designed, revised, or planned taking into consideration the potential impacts of climate change. Presently Venezuela is an active participant state in the negotiation for a framework convention on climate change. That is a very difficult negotiation for our country. Here we have to conciliate enviromental principles with national economic interests. The elements of our position in this contex are presented in this statement.

  10. Predicting evolutionary responses to climate change in the sea.

    PubMed

    Munday, Philip L; Warner, Robert R; Monro, Keyne; Pandolfi, John M; Marshall, Dustin J

    2013-12-01

    An increasing number of short-term experimental studies show significant effects of projected ocean warming and ocean acidification on the performance on marine organisms. Yet, it remains unclear if we can reliably predict the impact of climate change on marine populations and ecosystems, because we lack sufficient understanding of the capacity for marine organisms to adapt to rapid climate change. In this review, we emphasise why an evolutionary perspective is crucial to understanding climate change impacts in the sea and examine the approaches that may be useful for addressing this challenge. We first consider what the geological record and present-day analogues of future climate conditions can tell us about the potential for adaptation to climate change. We also examine evidence that phenotypic plasticity may assist marine species to persist in a rapidly changing climate. We then outline the various experimental approaches that can be used to estimate evolutionary potential, focusing on molecular tools, quantitative genetics, and experimental evolution, and we describe the benefits of combining different approaches to gain a deeper understanding of evolutionary potential. Our goal is to provide a platform for future research addressing the evolutionary potential for marine organisms to cope with climate change.

  11. Planning and Management: Programmatic Response to Climate Change and Water

    EPA Pesticide Factsheets

    The Water program at EPA has been working to adapt to climate change for years. The 2012 Strategy sets out long-terms goals for climate action, Highlights reports track progress, and new workplans point out actions to be taken that year.

  12. Hydrological Responses to Land-Use Change Scenarios under Constant and Changed Climatic Conditions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Ling; Nan, Zhuotong; Yu, Wenjun; Ge, Yingchun

    2016-02-01

    This study quantified the hydrological responses to land-use change scenarios in the upper and middle Heihe River basin (HRB), northwest China, under constant and changed climatic conditions by combining a land-use/cover change model (dynamic conversion of land use and its effects, Dyna-CLUE) and a hydrological model (soil and water assessment tool, SWAT). Five land-use change scenarios, i.e., historical trend (HT), ecological protection (EP), strict ecological protection (SEP), economic development (ED), and rapid economic development (RED) scenarios, were established. Under constant climatic condition, hydrological variations are only induced by land-use changes in different scenarios. The changes in mean streamflow at the outlets of the upper and the middle HRB are not pronounced, although the different scenarios produce different outcomes. However, more pronounced changes are observed on a subbasin level. The frequency of extreme flood is projected to decrease under the SEP scenario, while under the other scenarios, no changes can be found. Two emission scenarios (A1B and B1) of three general circulation models (HadCM3, CGCM3, and CCSM3) were employed to generate future possible climatic conditions. Under changed climatic condition, hydrological variations are induced by the combination of land-use and climatic changes. The results indicate that the impacts of land-use changes become secondary when the changed climatic conditions have been considered. The frequencies of extreme flood and drought are projected to decrease and increase, respectively, under all climate scenarios. Although some agreements can be reached, pronounced difference of hydrological responses can be observed for different climate scenarios of different GCMs.

  13. Hydrological Responses to Land-Use Change Scenarios under Constant and Changed Climatic Conditions.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Ling; Nan, Zhuotong; Yu, Wenjun; Ge, Yingchun

    2016-02-01

    This study quantified the hydrological responses to land-use change scenarios in the upper and middle Heihe River basin (HRB), northwest China, under constant and changed climatic conditions by combining a land-use/cover change model (dynamic conversion of land use and its effects, Dyna-CLUE) and a hydrological model (soil and water assessment tool, SWAT). Five land-use change scenarios, i.e., historical trend (HT), ecological protection (EP), strict ecological protection (SEP), economic development (ED), and rapid economic development (RED) scenarios, were established. Under constant climatic condition, hydrological variations are only induced by land-use changes in different scenarios. The changes in mean streamflow at the outlets of the upper and the middle HRB are not pronounced, although the different scenarios produce different outcomes. However, more pronounced changes are observed on a subbasin level. The frequency of extreme flood is projected to decrease under the SEP scenario, while under the other scenarios, no changes can be found. Two emission scenarios (A1B and B1) of three general circulation models (HadCM3, CGCM3, and CCSM3) were employed to generate future possible climatic conditions. Under changed climatic condition, hydrological variations are induced by the combination of land-use and climatic changes. The results indicate that the impacts of land-use changes become secondary when the changed climatic conditions have been considered. The frequencies of extreme flood and drought are projected to decrease and increase, respectively, under all climate scenarios. Although some agreements can be reached, pronounced difference of hydrological responses can be observed for different climate scenarios of different GCMs.

  14. Climate Change Impacts and Responses: Societal Indicators for the National Climate Assessment

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kenney, Melissa A.; Chen, Robert S.; Maldonado, Julie; Quattrochi, Dale

    2011-01-01

    The Climate Change Impacts and Responses: Societal Indicators for the National Climate Assessment workshop, sponsored by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) for the National Climate Assessment (NCA), was held on April 28-29, 2011 at The Madison Hotel in Washington, DC. A group of 56 experts (see list in Appendix B) convened to share their experiences. Participants brought to bear a wide range of disciplinary expertise in the social and natural sciences, sector experience, and knowledge about developing and implementing indicators for a range of purposes. Participants included representatives from federal and state government, non-governmental organizations, tribes, universities, and communities. The purpose of the workshop was to assist the NCA in developing a strategic framework for climate-related physical, ecological, and socioeconomic indicators that can be easily communicated with the U.S. population and that will support monitoring, assessment, prediction, evaluation, and decision-making. The NCA indicators are envisioned as a relatively small number of policy-relevant integrated indicators designed to provide a consistent, objective, and transparent overview of major variations in climate impacts, vulnerabilities, adaptation, and mitigation activities across sectors, regions, and timeframes. The workshop participants were asked to provide input on a number of topics, including: (1) categories of societal indicators for the NCA; (2) alternative approaches to constructing indicators and the better approaches for NCA to consider; (3) specific requirements and criteria for implementing the indicators; and (4) sources of data for and creators of such indicators. Socioeconomic indicators could include demographic, cultural, behavioral, economic, public health, and policy components relevant to impacts, vulnerabilities, and adaptation to climate change as well as both proactive and reactive responses to climate change. Participants provided

  15. Responses of vegetation distribution to climate change in China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhao, Dongsheng; Wu, Shaohong

    2014-07-01

    Climate plays a crucial role in controlling vegetation distribution and climate change may therefore cause extended changes. A coupled biogeography and biogeochemistry model called BIOME4 was modified by redefining the bioclimatic limits of key plant function types on the basis of the regional vegetation-climate relationships in China. Compared to existing natural vegetation distribution, BIOME4 is proven more reliable in simulating the overall vegetation distribution in China. Possible changes in vegetation distribution were simulated under climate change scenarios by using the improved model. Simulation results suggest that regional climate change would result in dramatic changes in vegetation distribution. Climate change may increase the areas covered by tropical forests, warm-temperate forests, savannahs/dry woodlands and grasslands/dry shrublands, but decrease the areas occupied by temperate forests, boreal forests, deserts, dry tundra and tundra across China. Most vegetation in east China, specifically the boreal forests and the tropical forests, may shift their boundaries northwards. The tundra and dry tundra on the Tibetan Plateau may be progressively confined to higher elevation.

  16. Bioethics and Climate Change: A Response to Macpherson and Valles.

    PubMed

    Resnik, David B

    2016-10-01

    Two articles published in Bioethics recently have explored the ways that bioethics can contribute to the climate change debate. Cheryl Cox Macpherson argues that bioethicists can play an important role in the climate change debate by helping the public to better understand the values at stake and the trade-offs that must be made in individual and social choices, and Sean Valles claims that bioethicists can contribute to the debate by framing the issues in terms of the public health impacts of climate change. While Macpherson and Valles make valid points concerning a potential role for bioethics in the climate change debate, it is important to recognize that much more than ethical analysis and reflection will be needed to significantly impact public attitudes and government policies. © 2016 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  17. Rapid adaptive responses to climate change in corals

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Torda, Gergely; Donelson, Jennifer M.; Aranda, Manuel; Barshis, Daniel J.; Bay, Line; Berumen, Michael L.; Bourne, David G.; Cantin, Neal; Foret, Sylvain; Matz, Mikhail; Miller, David J.; Moya, Aurelie; Putnam, Hollie M.; Ravasi, Timothy; van Oppen, Madeleine J. H.; Thurber, Rebecca Vega; Vidal-Dupiol, Jeremie; Voolstra, Christian R.; Watson, Sue-Ann; Whitelaw, Emma; Willis, Bette L.; Munday, Philip L.

    2017-09-01

    Pivotal to projecting the fate of coral reefs is the capacity of reef-building corals to acclimatize and adapt to climate change. Transgenerational plasticity may enable some marine organisms to acclimatize over several generations and it has been hypothesized that epigenetic processes and microbial associations might facilitate adaptive responses. However, current evidence is equivocal and understanding of the underlying processes is limited. Here, we discuss prospects for observing transgenerational plasticity in corals and the mechanisms that could enable adaptive plasticity in the coral holobiont, including the potential role of epigenetics and coral-associated microbes. Well-designed and strictly controlled experiments are needed to distinguish transgenerational plasticity from other forms of plasticity, and to elucidate the underlying mechanisms and their relative importance compared with genetic adaptation.

  18. Measured Climate Induced Volume Changes of Three Glaciers and Current Glacier-Climate Response Prediction

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Trabant, D. C.; March, R. S.; Cox, L. H.; Josberger, E. G.

    2003-12-01

    Small but hydrologically significant shifts in climate have affected the rates of glacier volume change at the three U.S. Geological Survey Benchmark glaciers. Rate changes are detected as inflections in the cumulative conventional and reference-surface mass-balances of Wolverine and Gulkana Glaciers in Alaska and South Cascade Glacier in Washington. The cumulative mass balances are robust and have recently been corroborated by geodetic determinations of glacier volume change. Furthermore, the four-decade length of record is unique for the western hemisphere. Balance trends at South Cascade Glacier in Washington are generally in the opposite sense compared with Wolverine Glacier in Alaska; NCEP correlation of winter balance with local winter temperatures is positive at 0.59 for Wolverine and -0.64 for South Cascade Glacier. At Wolverine Glacier, the negative trend of cumulative mass balances, since measurements began in 1965, was replaced by a growth trend \\(positive mass balances\\) during the late 1970s and 1980s. The positive mass-balance trend was driven by increased precipitation during the 1976/77 to 1989 period. At Gulkana Glacier, the cumulative mass-balance trend has been negative throughout its measurement history, but with rate-change inflection points that coincide with the interdecadal climate-regime shifts in the North Pacific indices. At South Cascade Glacier, the mass-loss trend, observed since measurements began in 1953, was replaced by a positive trend between 1970 and 1976 then became strongly and continuously negative until 1997 when the rate of loss generally decreased. Since 1989, the trends of the glaciers in Alaska have also been strongly negative. These loss rates are the highest rates in the entire record. The strongly negative trends during the 1990s agree with climate studies that suggest that the period since the 1989 regime shift has been unusual. Volume response time and reference surface balance are the current suggested methods for

  19. Wildfire responses to abrupt climate change in North America

    PubMed Central

    Marlon, J. R.; Bartlein, P. J.; Walsh, M. K.; Harrison, S. P.; Brown, K. J.; Edwards, M. E.; Higuera, P. E.; Power, M. J.; Anderson, R. S.; Briles, C.; Brunelle, A.; Carcaillet, C.; Daniels, M.; Hu, F. S.; Lavoie, M.; Long, C.; Minckley, T.; Richard, P. J. H.; Scott, A. C.; Shafer, D. S.; Tinner, W.; Umbanhowar, C. E.; Whitlock, C.

    2009-01-01

    It is widely accepted, based on data from the last few decades and on model simulations, that anthropogenic climate change will cause increased fire activity. However, less attention has been paid to the relationship between abrupt climate changes and heightened fire activity in the paleorecord. We use 35 charcoal and pollen records to assess how fire regimes in North America changed during the last glacial–interglacial transition (15 to 10 ka), a time of large and rapid climate changes. We also test the hypothesis that a comet impact initiated continental-scale wildfires at 12.9 ka; the data do not support this idea, nor are continent-wide fires indicated at any time during deglaciation. There are, however, clear links between large climate changes and fire activity. Biomass burning gradually increased from the glacial period to the beginning of the Younger Dryas. Although there are changes in biomass burning during the Younger Dryas, there is no systematic trend. There is a further increase in biomass burning after the Younger Dryas. Intervals of rapid climate change at 13.9, 13.2, and 11.7 ka are marked by large increases in fire activity. The timing of changes in fire is not coincident with changes in human population density or the timing of the extinction of the megafauna. Although these factors could have contributed to fire-regime changes at individual sites or at specific times, the charcoal data indicate an important role for climate, and particularly rapid climate change, in determining broad-scale levels of fire activity. PMID:19190185

  20. Wildfire responses to abrupt climate change in North America.

    PubMed

    Marlon, J R; Bartlein, P J; Walsh, M K; Harrison, S P; Brown, K J; Edwards, M E; Higuera, P E; Power, M J; Anderson, R S; Briles, C; Brunelle, A; Carcaillet, C; Daniels, M; Hu, F S; Lavoie, M; Long, C; Minckley, T; Richard, P J H; Scott, A C; Shafer, D S; Tinner, W; Umbanhowar, C E; Whitlock, C

    2009-02-24

    It is widely accepted, based on data from the last few decades and on model simulations, that anthropogenic climate change will cause increased fire activity. However, less attention has been paid to the relationship between abrupt climate changes and heightened fire activity in the paleorecord. We use 35 charcoal and pollen records to assess how fire regimes in North America changed during the last glacial-interglacial transition (15 to 10 ka), a time of large and rapid climate changes. We also test the hypothesis that a comet impact initiated continental-scale wildfires at 12.9 ka; the data do not support this idea, nor are continent-wide fires indicated at any time during deglaciation. There are, however, clear links between large climate changes and fire activity. Biomass burning gradually increased from the glacial period to the beginning of the Younger Dryas. Although there are changes in biomass burning during the Younger Dryas, there is no systematic trend. There is a further increase in biomass burning after the Younger Dryas. Intervals of rapid climate change at 13.9, 13.2, and 11.7 ka are marked by large increases in fire activity. The timing of changes in fire is not coincident with changes in human population density or the timing of the extinction of the megafauna. Although these factors could have contributed to fire-regime changes at individual sites or at specific times, the charcoal data indicate an important role for climate, and particularly rapid climate change, in determining broad-scale levels of fire activity.

  1. Pleistocene climate, phylogeny, and climate envelope models: an integrative approach to better understand species' response to climate change.

    PubMed

    Lawing, A Michelle; Polly, P David

    2011-01-01

    Mean annual temperature reported by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change increases at least 1.1°C to 6.4°C over the next 90 years. In context, a change in climate of 6°C is approximately the difference between the mean annual temperature of the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM) and our current warm interglacial. Species have been responding to changing climate throughout Earth's history and their previous biological responses can inform our expectations for future climate change. Here we synthesize geological evidence in the form of stable oxygen isotopes, general circulation paleoclimate models, species' evolutionary relatedness, and species' geographic distributions. We use the stable oxygen isotope record to develop a series of temporally high-resolution paleoclimate reconstructions spanning the Middle Pleistocene to Recent, which we use to map ancestral climatic envelope reconstructions for North American rattlesnakes. A simple linear interpolation between current climate and a general circulation paleoclimate model of the LGM using stable oxygen isotope ratios provides good estimates of paleoclimate at other time periods. We use geologically informed rates of change derived from these reconstructions to predict magnitudes and rates of change in species' suitable habitat over the next century. Our approach to modeling the past suitable habitat of species is general and can be adopted by others. We use multiple lines of evidence of past climate (isotopes and climate models), phylogenetic topology (to correct the models for long-term changes in the suitable habitat of a species), and the fossil record, however sparse, to cross check the models. Our models indicate the annual rate of displacement in a clade of rattlesnakes over the next century will be 2 to 3 orders of magnitude greater (430-2,420 m/yr) than it has been on average for the past 320 ky (2.3 m/yr).

  2. Pleistocene Climate, Phylogeny, and Climate Envelope Models: An Integrative Approach to Better Understand Species' Response to Climate Change

    PubMed Central

    Lawing, A. Michelle; Polly, P. David

    2011-01-01

    Mean annual temperature reported by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change increases at least 1.1°C to 6.4°C over the next 90 years. In context, a change in climate of 6°C is approximately the difference between the mean annual temperature of the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM) and our current warm interglacial. Species have been responding to changing climate throughout Earth's history and their previous biological responses can inform our expectations for future climate change. Here we synthesize geological evidence in the form of stable oxygen isotopes, general circulation paleoclimate models, species' evolutionary relatedness, and species' geographic distributions. We use the stable oxygen isotope record to develop a series of temporally high-resolution paleoclimate reconstructions spanning the Middle Pleistocene to Recent, which we use to map ancestral climatic envelope reconstructions for North American rattlesnakes. A simple linear interpolation between current climate and a general circulation paleoclimate model of the LGM using stable oxygen isotope ratios provides good estimates of paleoclimate at other time periods. We use geologically informed rates of change derived from these reconstructions to predict magnitudes and rates of change in species' suitable habitat over the next century. Our approach to modeling the past suitable habitat of species is general and can be adopted by others. We use multiple lines of evidence of past climate (isotopes and climate models), phylogenetic topology (to correct the models for long-term changes in the suitable habitat of a species), and the fossil record, however sparse, to cross check the models. Our models indicate the annual rate of displacement in a clade of rattlesnakes over the next century will be 2 to 3 orders of magnitude greater (430-2,420 m/yr) than it has been on average for the past 320 ky (2.3 m/yr). PMID:22164305

  3. The response of two contrasting limestone grasslands to simulated climate change.

    PubMed

    Grime, J P; Brown, V K; Thompson, K; Masters, G J; Hillier, S H; Clarke, I P; Askew, A P; Corker, D; Kielty, J P

    2000-08-04

    Two different UK limestone grasslands were exposed to simulated climate change with the use of nonintrusive techniques to manipulate local climate over 5 years. Resistance to climate change, defined as the ability of a community to maintain its composition and biomass in response to environmental stress, could be explained by reference to the functional composition and successional status of the grasslands. The more fertile, early-successional grassland was much more responsive to climate change. Resistance could not be explained by the particular climates experienced by the two grasslands. Productive, disturbed landscapes created by modern human activity may prove more vulnerable to climate change than older, traditional landscapes.

  4. Research Summary: Projecting Vegetation and Wildfire Response to Changing Climate and Fire Management in Interior Alaska

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2016-08-21

    USER GUIDE Research Summary: Projecting Vegetation and Wildfire Response to Changing Climate and Fire Management in Interior Alaska SERDP Project...Summary: Projecting Vegetation and Wildfire Response to Changing Climate and Fire Management in Interior Alaska 5b. GRANT NUMBER 5c. PROGRAM ELEMENT NUMBER...forecast landscape change in response to projected changes in climate , fire regime, and fire management. 15. SUBJECT TERMS 16. SECURITY CLASSIFICATION OF

  5. Climate change and farmers' mental health: risks and responses.

    PubMed

    Berry, Helen L; Hogan, Anthony; Owen, Jennifer; Rickwood, Debra; Fragar, Lyn

    2011-03-01

    Climate change is exacerbating climate variability, evident in more frequent and severe weather-related disasters, such as droughts, fires, and floods. Most of what is known about the possible effects of climate change on rural mental health relates to prolonged drought. But though drought is known to be a disproportionate and general stressor, evidence is mixed and inconclusive. Over time, like drought other weather-related disasters may erode the social and economic bases on which farming communities depend. Rural vulnerability to mental health problems is greatly increased by socioeconomic disadvantage. Related factors may compound this, such as reduced access to health services as communities decline and a "stoical" culture that inhibits help-seeking. Australia has the world's most variable climate and is a major global agricultural producer. Yet despite Australia's (and, especially, rural communities') dependence on farmers' well-being and success, there is very little-and inconclusive-quantitative evidence about farmers' mental health. The aim of this review is to consider, with a view to informing other countries, how climate change and related factors may affect farmers' mental health in Australia. That information is a prerequisite to identifying, selecting, and evaluating adaptive strategies, to lessen the risks of adverse mental health outcomes. The authors identify the need for a systematic epidemiology of the mental health of farmers facing increasing climate change- related weather adversity.

  6. America's Climate Choices: Cross-Cutting Research Themes to Support Effective Responses to Climate Change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Moser, S. C.; America'S Climate Choices Science Panel

    2010-12-01

    The Science Panel of the America’s Climate Choices project concluded that the climate science research enterprise has to make substantial shifts to better meet the needs of the emerging policy and decision landscape in the US. While much scientific attention in the past necessarily and to great success focused on the physical and biogeochemical aspects of understanding the climate-Earth system, much greater focus is now needed in also developing a science of responses to climate change. To that end, the ACC Science report recommended seven cross-cutting themes, three of which will be highlighted in this talk as they touch on topics the physical science community tends to be less familiar with: (1) vulnerability and adaptation analyses of coupled human-environment systems; (2) research on strategies for limiting climate change; and (3) effective information and decision support systems. The presentation will define and sketch out the potential scope of each of these areas and provide examples from various sectors highlighted in the Science panel report.

  7. 77 FR 19661 - Draft National Water Program 2012 Strategy: Response to Climate Change

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2012-04-02

    ... AGENCY Draft National Water Program 2012 Strategy: Response to Climate Change AGENCY: Environmental... will address climate change challenges to its mission of protecting human health and the environment. Climate change alters the hydrological background in which EPA's programs function. Depending upon the...

  8. Complex response of the forest nitrogen cycle to climate change.

    PubMed

    Bernal, Susana; Hedin, Lars O; Likens, Gene E; Gerber, Stefan; Buso, Don C

    2012-02-28

    Climate exerts a powerful influence on biological processes, but the effects of climate change on ecosystem nutrient flux and cycling are poorly resolved. Although rare, long-term records offer a unique opportunity to disentangle effects of climate from other anthropogenic influences. Here, we examine the longest and most complete record of watershed nutrient and climate dynamics available worldwide, which was collected at the Hubbard Brook Experimental Forest in the northeastern United States. We used empirical analyses and model calculations to distinguish between effects of climate change and past perturbations on the forest nitrogen (N) cycle. We find that climate alone cannot explain the occurrence of a dramatic >90% drop in watershed nitrate export over the past 46 y, despite longer growing seasons and higher soil temperatures. The strongest climate influence was an increase in soil temperature accompanied by a shift in paths of soil water flow within the watershed, but this effect explained, at best, only ∼40% of the nitrate decline. In contrast, at least 50-60% of the observed change in the N export could be explained by the long-lasting effect of forest cutting in the early 1900s on the N cycle of the soil and vegetation pools. Our analysis shows that historic events can obscure the influence of modern day stresses on the N cycle, even when analyses have the advantage of being informed by 0.5-century-long datasets. These findings raise fundamental questions about interpretations of long-term trends as a baseline for understanding how climate change influences complex ecosystems.

  9. Complex response of the forest nitrogen cycle to climate change

    PubMed Central

    Bernal, Susana; Hedin, Lars O.; Likens, Gene E.; Gerber, Stefan; Buso, Don C.

    2012-01-01

    Climate exerts a powerful influence on biological processes, but the effects of climate change on ecosystem nutrient flux and cycling are poorly resolved. Although rare, long-term records offer a unique opportunity to disentangle effects of climate from other anthropogenic influences. Here, we examine the longest and most complete record of watershed nutrient and climate dynamics available worldwide, which was collected at the Hubbard Brook Experimental Forest in the northeastern United States. We used empirical analyses and model calculations to distinguish between effects of climate change and past perturbations on the forest nitrogen (N) cycle. We find that climate alone cannot explain the occurrence of a dramatic >90% drop in watershed nitrate export over the past 46 y, despite longer growing seasons and higher soil temperatures. The strongest climate influence was an increase in soil temperature accompanied by a shift in paths of soil water flow within the watershed, but this effect explained, at best, only ∼40% of the nitrate decline. In contrast, at least 50–60% of the observed change in the N export could be explained by the long-lasting effect of forest cutting in the early 1900s on the N cycle of the soil and vegetation pools. Our analysis shows that historic events can obscure the influence of modern day stresses on the N cycle, even when analyses have the advantage of being informed by 0.5-century-long datasets. These findings raise fundamental questions about interpretations of long-term trends as a baseline for understanding how climate change influences complex ecosystems. PMID:22331889

  10. Climate Change and Trophic Response of the Antarctic Bottom Fauna

    PubMed Central

    Aronson, Richard B.; Moody, Ryan M.; Ivany, Linda C.; Blake, Daniel B.; Werner, John E.; Glass, Alexander

    2009-01-01

    Background As Earth warms, temperate and subpolar marine species will increasingly shift their geographic ranges poleward. The endemic shelf fauna of Antarctica is especially vulnerable to climate-mediated biological invasions because cold temperatures currently exclude the durophagous (shell-breaking) predators that structure shallow-benthic communities elsewhere. Methodology/Principal Findings We used the Eocene fossil record from Seymour Island, Antarctic Peninsula, to project specifically how global warming will reorganize the nearshore benthos of Antarctica. A long-term cooling trend, which began with a sharp temperature drop ∼41 Ma (million years ago), eliminated durophagous predators—teleosts (modern bony fish), decapod crustaceans (crabs and lobsters) and almost all neoselachian elasmobranchs (modern sharks and rays)—from Antarctic nearshore waters after the Eocene. Even prior to those extinctions, durophagous predators became less active as coastal sea temperatures declined from 41 Ma to the end of the Eocene, ∼33.5 Ma. In response, dense populations of suspension-feeding ophiuroids and crinoids abruptly appeared. Dense aggregations of brachiopods transcended the cooling event with no apparent change in predation pressure, nor were there changes in the frequency of shell-drilling predation on venerid bivalves. Conclusions/Significance Rapid warming in the Southern Ocean is now removing the physiological barriers to shell-breaking predators, and crabs are returning to the Antarctic Peninsula. Over the coming decades to centuries, we predict a rapid reversal of the Eocene trends. Increasing predation will reduce or eliminate extant dense populations of suspension-feeding echinoderms from nearshore habitats along the Peninsula while brachiopods will continue to form large populations, and the intensity of shell-drilling predation on infaunal bivalves will not change appreciably. In time the ecological effects of global warming could spread to other

  11. Response of salt-marsh carbon accumulation to climate change.

    PubMed

    Kirwan, Matthew L; Mudd, Simon M

    2012-09-27

    About half of annual marine carbon burial takes place in shallow water ecosystems where geomorphic and ecological stability is driven by interactions between the flow of water, vegetation growth and sediment transport. Although the sensitivity of terrestrial and deep marine carbon pools to climate change has been studied for decades, there is little understanding of how coastal carbon accumulation rates will change and potentially feed back on climate. Here we develop a numerical model of salt marsh evolution, informed by recent measurements of productivity and decomposition, and demonstrate that competition between mineral sediment deposition and organic-matter accumulation determines the net impact of climate change on carbon accumulation in intertidal wetlands. We find that the direct impact of warming on soil carbon accumulation rates is more subtle than the impact of warming-driven sea level rise, although the impact of warming increases with increasing rates of sea level rise. Our simulations suggest that the net impact of climate change will be to increase carbon burial rates in the first half of the twenty-first century, but that carbon-climate feedbacks are likely to diminish over time.

  12. Dynamic response of desert wetlands to abrupt climate change

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Springer, Kathleen; Manker, Craig; Pigati, Jeff

    2015-01-01

    Desert wetlands are keystone ecosystems in arid environments and are preserved in the geologic record as groundwater discharge (GWD) deposits. GWD deposits are inherently discontinuous and stratigraphically complex, which has limited our understanding of how desert wetlands responded to past episodes of rapid climate change. Previous studies have shown that wetlands responded to climate change on glacial to interglacial timescales, but their sensitivity to short-lived climate perturbations is largely unknown. Here, we show that GWD deposits in the Las Vegas Valley (southern Nevada, United States) provide a detailed and nearly complete record of dynamic hydrologic changes during the past 35 ka (thousands of calibrated 14C years before present), including cycles of wetland expansion and contraction that correlate tightly with climatic oscillations recorded in the Greenland ice cores. Cessation of discharge associated with rapid warming events resulted in the collapse of entire wetland systems in the Las Vegas Valley at multiple times during the late Quaternary. On average, drought-like conditions, as recorded by widespread erosion and the formation of desert soils, lasted for a few centuries. This record illustrates the vulnerability of desert wetland flora and fauna to abrupt climate change. It also shows that GWD deposits can be used to reconstruct paleohydrologic conditions at millennial to submillennial timescales and informs conservation efforts aimed at protecting these fragile ecosystems in the face of anthropogenic warming.

  13. Dynamic response of desert wetlands to abrupt climate change

    PubMed Central

    Springer, Kathleen B.; Manker, Craig R.; Pigati, Jeffrey S.

    2015-01-01

    Desert wetlands are keystone ecosystems in arid environments and are preserved in the geologic record as groundwater discharge (GWD) deposits. GWD deposits are inherently discontinuous and stratigraphically complex, which has limited our understanding of how desert wetlands responded to past episodes of rapid climate change. Previous studies have shown that wetlands responded to climate change on glacial to interglacial timescales, but their sensitivity to short-lived climate perturbations is largely unknown. Here, we show that GWD deposits in the Las Vegas Valley (southern Nevada, United States) provide a detailed and nearly complete record of dynamic hydrologic changes during the past 35 ka (thousands of calibrated 14C years before present), including cycles of wetland expansion and contraction that correlate tightly with climatic oscillations recorded in the Greenland ice cores. Cessation of discharge associated with rapid warming events resulted in the collapse of entire wetland systems in the Las Vegas Valley at multiple times during the late Quaternary. On average, drought-like conditions, as recorded by widespread erosion and the formation of desert soils, lasted for a few centuries. This record illustrates the vulnerability of desert wetland flora and fauna to abrupt climate change. It also shows that GWD deposits can be used to reconstruct paleohydrologic conditions at millennial to submillennial timescales and informs conservation efforts aimed at protecting these fragile ecosystems in the face of anthropogenic warming. PMID:26554007

  14. Dynamic response of desert wetlands to abrupt climate change.

    PubMed

    Springer, Kathleen B; Manker, Craig R; Pigati, Jeffrey S

    2015-11-24

    Desert wetlands are keystone ecosystems in arid environments and are preserved in the geologic record as groundwater discharge (GWD) deposits. GWD deposits are inherently discontinuous and stratigraphically complex, which has limited our understanding of how desert wetlands responded to past episodes of rapid climate change. Previous studies have shown that wetlands responded to climate change on glacial to interglacial timescales, but their sensitivity to short-lived climate perturbations is largely unknown. Here, we show that GWD deposits in the Las Vegas Valley (southern Nevada, United States) provide a detailed and nearly complete record of dynamic hydrologic changes during the past 35 ka (thousands of calibrated (14)C years before present), including cycles of wetland expansion and contraction that correlate tightly with climatic oscillations recorded in the Greenland ice cores. Cessation of discharge associated with rapid warming events resulted in the collapse of entire wetland systems in the Las Vegas Valley at multiple times during the late Quaternary. On average, drought-like conditions, as recorded by widespread erosion and the formation of desert soils, lasted for a few centuries. This record illustrates the vulnerability of desert wetland flora and fauna to abrupt climate change. It also shows that GWD deposits can be used to reconstruct paleohydrologic conditions at millennial to submillennial timescales and informs conservation efforts aimed at protecting these fragile ecosystems in the face of anthropogenic warming.

  15. A plant’s perspective of extremes: Terrestrial plant responses to changing climatic variability

    PubMed Central

    Reyer, C.; Leuzinger, S.; Rammig, A.; Wolf, A.; Bartholomeus, R. P.; Bonfante, A.; de Lorenzi, F.; Dury, M.; Gloning, P.; Abou Jaoudé, R.; Klein, T.; Kuster, T. M.; Martins, M.; Niedrist, G.; Riccardi, M.; Wohlfahrt, G.; de Angelis, P.; de Dato, G.; François, L.; Menzel, A.; Pereira, M.

    2013-01-01

    We review observational, experimental and model results on how plants respond to extreme climatic conditions induced by changing climatic variability. Distinguishing between impacts of changing mean climatic conditions and changing climatic variability on terrestrial ecosystems is generally underrated in current studies. The goals of our review are thus (1) to identify plant processes that are vulnerable to changes in the variability of climatic variables rather than to changes in their mean, and (2) to depict/evaluate available study designs to quantify responses of plants to changing climatic variability. We find that phenology is largely affected by changing mean climate but also that impacts of climatic variability are much less studied but potentially damaging. We note that plant water relations seem to be very vulnerable to extremes driven by changes in temperature and precipitation and that heatwaves and flooding have stronger impacts on physiological processes than changing mean climate. Moreover, interacting phenological and physiological processes are likely to further complicate plant responses to changing climatic variability. Phenological and physiological processes and their interactions culminate in even more sophisticated responses to changing mean climate and climatic variability at the species and community level. Generally, observational studies are well suited to study plant responses to changing mean climate, but less suitable to gain a mechanistic understanding of plant responses to climatic variability. Experiments seem best suited to simulate extreme events. In models, temporal resolution and model structure are crucial to capture plant responses to changing climatic variability. We highlight that a combination of experimental, observational and /or modeling studies have the potential to overcome important caveats of the respective individual approaches. PMID:23504722

  16. Researchers focus attention on coastal response to climate change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Anderson, John; Rodriguez, Antonio; Fletcher, Charles; Fitzgerald, Duncan

    The world's population has been steadily migrating toward coastal cities, resulting in severe stress on coastal environments. But the most severe human impact on coastal regions may lie ahead as the rate of global sea-level rise accelerates and the impacts of global warming on coastal climates and oceanographic dynamics increase [Varekamp and Thomas, 1998; Hinrichsen, 1999; Goodwin et al., 2000]. Little is currently being done to forecast the impact of global climate change on coasts during the next century and beyond. Indeed, there are still many politicians, and even some scientists, who doubt that global change is a real threat to society.

  17. California climate change, hydrologic response, and flood forecasting

    SciTech Connect

    Miller, Norman L.

    2003-11-11

    There is strong evidence that the lower atmosphere has been warming at an unprecedented rate during the last 50 years, and it is expected to further increase at least for the next 100 years. Warmer air mass implies a higher capacity to hold water vapor and an increased likelihood of an acceleration of the global water cycle. This acceleration is not validated and considerable new research has gone into understanding aspects of the water cycle (e.g. Miller et al. 2003). Several significant findings on the hydrologic response to climate change can be reported. It is well understood that the observed and expected warming is related to sea level rise. In a recent seminar at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, James Hansen (Director of the Institute for Space Studies, National Aeronautics and Space Administration) stressed that a 1.25 Wm{sup -2} increase in radiative forcing will lead to an increase in the near surface air temperature by 1 C. This small increase in temperature from 2000 levels is enough to cause very significant impacts to coasts. Maury Roos (Chief Hydrologist, California Department of Water Resources) has shown that a 0.3 m rise in sea level shifts the San Francisco Bay 100-year storm surge flood event to a 10-year event. Related coastal protection costs for California based on sea level rise are shown. In addition to rising sea level, snowmelt-related streamflow represents a particular problem in California. Model studies have indicated that there will be approximately a 50% decrease in snow pack by 2100. This potential deficit must be fully recognized and plans need to be put in place well in advance. In addition, the warmer atmosphere can hold more water vapor and result in more intense warm winter-time precipitation events that result in flooding. During anticipated high flow, reservoirs need to release water to maintain their structural integrity. California is at risk of water shortages, floods, and related ecosystem stresses. More research

  18. Streamflow response to climate and landuse changes in a coastal watershed in North Carolina

    Treesearch

    S. Qi; G. Sun; Y. Wang; S.G. McNulty; J.A. Moore Myers

    2009-01-01

    It is essential to examine the sensitivity of hydrologic responses to climate and landuse change across different physiographic regions in order to formulate sound water management policies for local response to projected global change. This study used the a simulation model to examine the potential impacts of climate and landuse changes on streamflow of the...

  19. The insect response to climate change: Perspectives from the Quaternary record

    SciTech Connect

    Ashworth, A.C.; Schwert, D.P. . Quaternary Entomology Lab.)

    1993-03-01

    Data based on museum collections of insects are generally inadequate to answer questions related to the response of insects to recent and potential changes in climate. The most important source of information for this purpose is the late Quaternary fossil record. Abundant, well-preserved, [sup 14]C-dated assemblages of insect fossils provide information with which to answer the following questions: (1) will climate change result in speciation--all evidence suggests that species are constant through the climate changes of the late Quaternary, future climate change would not be expected to result in accelerated rates of speciation; (2) will climate change result in extinction--few species became extinct as a result of the large-scale changes in climate and physical environment during the quaternary, although large-scale extirpation might occur, future climate change would not be expected to result in widespread extinction of species; (3) will climate change result in changes in geographic distribution--species survived late Quaternary climatic change through the ability of individuals to disperse into suitable habitats. The result was large changes in geographic distribution of species, as exemplified by the succession of faunal changes that occurred in response to the climatic changes of the late Wisconsinan in the midcontinent, future climate change would be expected to result in significant range changes of species.

  20. Reproductive responses of an apex predator to changing climatic conditions

    Treesearch

    Susan Rebecca. Salafsky

    2015-01-01

    Apex predators are ideal subjects for evaluating the effects of changing climatic conditions on the productivity of forested landscapes, because the quality of their breeding habitat depends primarily on the availability of resources at lower trophic levels. Identifying the environmental factors that influence the reproductive output of apex predators can, therefore,...

  1. Psychological responses to the proximity of climate change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brügger, Adrian; Dessai, Suraje; Devine-Wright, Patrick; Morton, Thomas A.; Pidgeon, Nicholas F.

    2015-12-01

    A frequent suggestion to increase individuals' willingness to take action on climate change and to support relevant policies is to highlight its proximal consequences, that is, those that are close in space and time. But previous studies that have tested this proximizing approach have not revealed the expected positive effects on individual action and support for addressing climate change. We present three lines of psychological reasoning that provide compelling arguments as to why highlighting proximal impacts of climate change might not be as effective a way to increase individual mitigation and adaptation efforts as is often assumed. Our contextualization of the proximizing approach within established psychological research suggests that, depending on the particular theoretical perspective one takes on this issue, and on specific individual characteristics suggested by these perspectives, proximizing can bring about the intended positive effects, can have no (visible) effect or can even backfire. Thus, the effects of proximizing are much more complex than is commonly assumed. Revealing this complexity contributes to a refined theoretical understanding of the role that psychological distance plays in the context of climate change and opens up further avenues for future research and for interventions.

  2. Climate change compromises the immune response of maize

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Maize is by quantity the most important C4 cereal crop in the US; however, future climate changes are expected to increase maize susceptibility to mycotoxigenic fungal pathogens and reduce productivity. While rising atmospheric [CO2] is a driving force behind the warmer temperatures and drought, whi...

  3. Soil management challenges in response to climatic change

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Agriculture has tremendous potential to help solve global food, feed, fiber, and bioenergy challenges and respond to changing climatic conditions provided we do not compromise our soil, water and air resources. This presentation will examine soil management, defined by the Soil Science Society of Am...

  4. The History of Germany's Response to Climate Change.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Cavender, Jeannine; Jager, Jill

    1993-01-01

    Traces the history of the German climate change debate in the last 50 years and discusses the forces and events that shaped it. Examines the way in which scientists, the government, industry, nongovernmental organizations, and the media entered into and influenced the debate. (54 references) (MDH)

  5. The History of Germany's Response to Climate Change.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Cavender, Jeannine; Jager, Jill

    1993-01-01

    Traces the history of the German climate change debate in the last 50 years and discusses the forces and events that shaped it. Examines the way in which scientists, the government, industry, nongovernmental organizations, and the media entered into and influenced the debate. (54 references) (MDH)

  6. Hydrographic response of Hornsund Fjord (South Spitsbergen) to climate change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Promińska, Agnieszka; Falck, Eva; Walczowski, Waldemar

    2017-04-01

    Hornsund is the southernmost end-member in the network of fjords of western Spitsbergen. It is a medium, through which different waters mix, transform and affect land and marine ecosystems. It is a great laboratory for study of direct interaction between oceanic and land fjord boundaries as a response to climate change. Investigations in the fjord are mainly based on summer set of data collected every July between 2001 and 2016 during Arctic cruises on RV Oceania, a ship belonging to the Institute of Oceanology Polish Academy of Sciences. High resolution measurements of temperature and salinity were conducted using CTD probe in a scanfish mode. Supplementary data come from Polish-Norwegian cooperation in the AWAKE-2 project, which include hydrographic measurements carried out from a small boat in spring and late summer as well as a full year hydrographic record from moorings. Over 16-years of regular measurements significant changes in water temperature, salinity and water mass distribution in the fjord have been observed. Hydrographic patterns were strongly dependent on the extreme oceanic events in the Svalbard area, either massive flooding of the West Spitsbergen Shelf by the Atlantic Water or inflow of cold water and sea ice carried by the Sørkapp Current from the Barents Sea. Moreover, extremely warm winters observed during recent years and decrease in winter ice cover in the fjord had great implication on the Winter Cooled Water, which was typically seen in summer in the most inner part of the fjord, but seems to be a rare feature in the coming years. The first attempt to assess the role of the Sørkapp Current for Hornsund Fjord is addressed as well.

  7. Bioclimatic Classification of Northeast Asia for climate change response

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Choi, Y.; Jeon, S. W.; Lim, C. H.

    2016-12-01

    As climate change has been getting worse, we should monitor the change of biodiversity, and distribution of species to handle the crisis and take advantage of climate change. The development of bioclimatic map which classifies land into homogenous zones by similar environment properties is the first step to establish a strategy. Statistically derived classifications of land provide useful spatial frameworks to support ecosystem research, monitoring and policy decisions. Many countries are trying to make this kind of map and actively utilize it to ecosystem conservation and management. However, the Northeast Asia including North Korea doesn't have detailed environmental information, and has not built environmental classification map. Therefore, this study presents a bioclimatic map of Northeast Asia based on statistical clustering of bioclimate data. Bioclim data ver1.4 which provided by WorldClim were considered for inclusion in a model. Eight of the most relevant climate variables were selected by correlation analysis, based on previous studies. Principal Components Analysis (PCA) was used to explain 86% of the variation into three independent dimensions, which were subsequently clustered using an ISODATA clustering. The bioclimatic zone of Northeast Asia could consist of 29, 35, and 50 zones. This bioclimatic map has a 30' resolution. To assess the accuracy, the correlation coefficient was calculated between the first principal component values of the classification variables and the vegetation index, Gross Primary Production (GPP). It shows about 0.5 Pearson correlation coefficient. This study constructed Northeast Asia bioclimatic map by statistical method with high resolution, but in order to better reflect the realities, the variety of climate variables should be considered. Also, further studies should do more quantitative and qualitative validation in various ways. Then, this could be used more effectively to support decision making on climate change

  8. Hydrologic response of Pacific Northwest river to climate change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Su, F.; Cuo, L.; Wu, H.; Mantua, N.; Lettenmaier, D. P.

    2009-12-01

    The climate of the Pacific Northwest (PNW - which we define as the Columbia River basin and watersheds draining to the Oregon and Washington coasts) is expected to warm by approximately 0.3°C per decade in the next 100 years based on the IPCC the Fourth Assessment Report (AR4) results. PNW hydrology is particularly sensitive to a warming climate because of the dominant role of snowmelt in seasonal streamflow. Timing shifts in seasonality of flows, peak discharge, and base flows will impact water resource management, regional electrical energy production, and freshwater ecosystems. In this work we update previous studies of implications of climate change on PNW hydrology using a macroscale hydrology model driven by simulations of temperature and precipitation downscaled from runs of 20 General Circulation Models (GCMs) under two emissions scenarios (lower B1 and mid-high A1B) in the 21st century. The hydrology model is implemented at 1/16th degree spatial resolution over the entire PNW. A (statistical) bias-correction and spatial disaggregation downscaling approach is used for translating the transient monthly climate model output into continuous daily forcings for the hydrologic analysis. We evaluate projected changes in snow water equivalent, seasonal streamflow, and frequency of peak low flows over a set of case study watersheds in the region. We also compare these hydrologic projections with previous analysis based on delta downscaling method over the PNW. This research is part of a project investigating climate change impacts on the future of wild Pacific salmon, and is a pilot effort to investigate the hydrologic sensitivity of salmon bearing watersheds around the entire North Pacific Rim.

  9. Plasticity and genetic adaptation mediate amphibian and reptile responses to climate change.

    PubMed

    Urban, Mark C; Richardson, Jonathan L; Freidenfelds, Nicole A

    2014-01-01

    Phenotypic plasticity and genetic adaptation are predicted to mitigate some of the negative biotic consequences of climate change. Here, we evaluate evidence for plastic and evolutionary responses to climate variation in amphibians and reptiles via a literature review and meta-analysis. We included studies that either document phenotypic changes through time or space. Plasticity had a clear and ubiquitous role in promoting phenotypic changes in response to climate variation. For adaptive evolution, we found no direct evidence for evolution of amphibians or reptiles in response to climate change over time. However, we found many studies that documented adaptive responses to climate along spatial gradients. Plasticity provided a mixture of adaptive and maladaptive responses to climate change, highlighting that plasticity frequently, but not always, could ameliorate climate change. Based on our review, we advocate for more experiments that survey genetic changes through time in response to climate change. Overall, plastic and genetic variation in amphibians and reptiles could buffer some of the formidable threats from climate change, but large uncertainties remain owing to limited data.

  10. Plasticity and genetic adaptation mediate amphibian and reptile responses to climate change

    PubMed Central

    Urban, Mark C; Richardson, Jonathan L; Freidenfelds, Nicole A

    2014-01-01

    Phenotypic plasticity and genetic adaptation are predicted to mitigate some of the negative biotic consequences of climate change. Here, we evaluate evidence for plastic and evolutionary responses to climate variation in amphibians and reptiles via a literature review and meta-analysis. We included studies that either document phenotypic changes through time or space. Plasticity had a clear and ubiquitous role in promoting phenotypic changes in response to climate variation. For adaptive evolution, we found no direct evidence for evolution of amphibians or reptiles in response to climate change over time. However, we found many studies that documented adaptive responses to climate along spatial gradients. Plasticity provided a mixture of adaptive and maladaptive responses to climate change, highlighting that plasticity frequently, but not always, could ameliorate climate change. Based on our review, we advocate for more experiments that survey genetic changes through time in response to climate change. Overall, plastic and genetic variation in amphibians and reptiles could buffer some of the formidable threats from climate change, but large uncertainties remain owing to limited data. PMID:24454550

  11. Business Responses to Climate Change. Identifying Emergent Strategies

    SciTech Connect

    Kolk, A.; Pinkse, J.

    2005-07-01

    Companies face much uncertainty about the competitive effects of the recently adopted Kyoto Protocol on global climate change and the current and future regulations that may emerge from it. Companies have considerable discretion to explore different market strategies to address global warming and reduce greenhouse gas emissions. This article examines these strategic options by reviewing the market-oriented actions that are currently being taken by 136 large companies that are part of the Global 500. There are six different market strategies that companies use to address climate change and that consist of different combinations of the market components available to managers. Managers can choose between more emphasis on improvements in their business activities through innovation or employ compensatory approaches such as emissions trading. They can either act by themselves or work with other companies, NGOs, or (local) governments.

  12. Declining uncertainty in transient climate response as CO2 forcing dominates future climate change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Myhre, Gunnar; Boucher, Olivier; Bréon, François-Marie; Forster, Piers; Shindell, Drew

    2015-03-01

    Carbon dioxide has exerted the largest portion of radiative forcing and surface temperature change over the industrial era, but other anthropogenic influences have also contributed. However, large uncertainties in total forcing make it difficult to derive climate sensitivity from historical observations. Anthropogenic forcing has increased between the Fourth and Fifth Assessment Reports of the Intergovernmental Panel of Climate Change (IPCC; refs , ), although its relative uncertainty has decreased. Here we show, based on data from the two reports, that this evolution towards lower uncertainty can be expected to continue into the future. Because it is easier to reduce air pollution than carbon dioxide emissions and because of the long lifetime of carbon dioxide, the less uncertain carbon dioxide forcing is expected to become increasingly dominant. Using a statistical model, we estimate that the relative uncertainty in anthropogenic forcing of more than 40% quoted in the latest IPCC report for 2011 will be almost halved by 2030, even without better scientific understanding. Absolute forcing uncertainty will also decline for the first time, provided projected decreases in aerosols occur. Other factors being equal, this stronger constraint on forcing will bring a significant reduction in the uncertainty of observation-based estimates of the transient climate response, with a 50% reduction in its uncertainty range expected by 2030.

  13. Recent intense hurricane response to global climate change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Holland, Greg; Bruyère, Cindy L.

    2014-02-01

    An Anthropogenic Climate Change Index (ACCI) is developed and used to investigate the potential global warming contribution to current tropical cyclone activity. The ACCI is defined as the difference between the means of ensembles of climate simulations with and without anthropogenic gases and aerosols. This index indicates that the bulk of the current anthropogenic warming has occurred in the past four decades, which enables improved confidence in assessing hurricane changes as it removes many of the data issues from previous eras. We find no anthropogenic signal in annual global tropical cyclone or hurricane frequencies. But a strong signal is found in proportions of both weaker and stronger hurricanes: the proportion of Category 4 and 5 hurricanes has increased at a rate of ~25-30 % per °C of global warming after accounting for analysis and observing system changes. This has been balanced by a similar decrease in Category 1 and 2 hurricane proportions, leading to development of a distinctly bimodal intensity distribution, with the secondary maximum at Category 4 hurricanes. This global signal is reproduced in all ocean basins. The observed increase in Category 4-5 hurricanes may not continue at the same rate with future global warming. The analysis suggests that following an initial climate increase in intense hurricane proportions a saturation level will be reached beyond which any further global warming will have little effect.

  14. Climate change

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Cronin, Thomas M.

    2016-01-01

    Climate change (including climate variability) refers to regional or global changes in mean climate state or in patterns of climate variability over decades to millions of years often identified using statistical methods and sometimes referred to as changes in long-term weather conditions (IPCC, 2012). Climate is influenced by changes in continent-ocean configurations due to plate tectonic processes, variations in Earth’s orbit, axial tilt and precession, atmospheric greenhouse gas (GHG) concentrations, solar variability, volcanism, internal variability resulting from interactions between the atmosphere, oceans and ice (glaciers, small ice caps, ice sheets, and sea ice), and anthropogenic activities such as greenhouse gas emissions and land use and their effects on carbon cycling.

  15. [Research advances in vulnerability assessment of natural ecosystem response to climate change].

    PubMed

    Zhao, Hui-xia; Wu, Shao-hong; Jiang, Lu-guang

    2007-02-01

    Climate change with global warming as the sign has been caught great attention by the governments, international organizations, and scientists in the world. Human society and natural ecosystem are both exposed to climate change, and more and more people are waked up by its increasing harm. Vulnerability analysis and assessment are the key and basis for adapting and mitigating climate change, being the highlight in the research fields of climate change and ecology in recent years. The vulnerability assessment of climate change is being carried out in various research fields and on different scales, and much progress has been made. This paper introduced the concept of vulnerability, and summarized the research progress in vulnerability assessment of climate change, with the focus on the frame and methodology of vulnerability assessment of natural ecosystem response to climate change. The existed problems and future prospects in this research area were also discussed.

  16. Continental weathering response to climate change: a modelling study (Invited)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Godderis, Y.; Williams, J. Z.; Schott, J.; Pollard, D.; Brantley, S. L.

    2009-12-01

    Chemical weathering is dependent on the climatic conditions, including air temperature and rainfall. Although obvious at the geological scale, this dependence has been recently evidenced at millenia to decadal timescales. In the present contribution, we explore the link between climate and weathering at these shorter timescales through numerical modelling. The rates of mineral weathering in loess deposited 23 ky ago in the Mississippi valley and experiencing soil formation for 10 ky are estimated using the WITCH model for weathering and the GENESIS model for climate simulation. The initial mineralogical composition of the loess is uniform along the Mississippi valley and mixes dolomite and alumino-silicates. Over the 10 kyr of the simulation, temperature at the soil surface is rising by up to 4°C, while the increase in the drainage of the loess section ranges from 10 to 40 % depending on the latitude of the simulated site. The calculated mineralogical evolution of the loess section is impacted, the main feature being the fast deepening of the dolomite weathering front by about 4 meters and the formation of a shallow plagioclase weathering front. The time evolution of the dissolved species production (hence the CO2 consumption) is calculated over the simulations. The exported dissolved silica output may rise by up to 25 %, but depends heavily on the latitude of the site. This coupled climatic-weathering study is then extended 200 years in the future to estimate the impact of the anthropogenic climate change on a weathering profile and on the CO2 consumption by weathering.

  17. Coral Reef Habitat Response to Climate Change Scenarios

    PubMed Central

    Freeman, Lauren A.; Kleypas, Joan A.; Miller, Arthur J.

    2013-01-01

    Coral reef ecosystems are threatened by both climate change and direct anthropogenic stress. Climate change will alter the physico-chemical environment that reefs currently occupy, leaving only limited regions that are conducive to reef habitation. Identifying these regions early may aid conservation efforts and inform decisions to transplant particular coral species or groups. Here a species distribution model (Maxent) is used to describe habitat suitable for coral reef growth. Two climate change scenarios (RCP4.5, RCP8.5) from the National Center for Atmospheric Research’s Community Earth System Model were used with Maxent to determine environmental suitability for corals (order Scleractinia). Environmental input variables best at representing the limits of suitable reef growth regions were isolated using a principal component analysis. Climate-driven changes in suitable habitat depend strongly on the unique region of reefs used to train Maxent. Increased global habitat loss was predicted in both climate projections through the 21st century. A maximum habitat loss of 43% by 2100 was predicted in RCP4.5 and 82% in RCP8.5. When the model is trained solely with environmental data from the Caribbean/Atlantic, 83% of global habitat was lost by 2100 for RCP4.5 and 88% was lost for RCP8.5. Similarly, global runs trained only with Pacific Ocean reefs estimated that 60% of suitable habitat would be lost by 2100 in RCP4.5 and 90% in RCP8.5. When Maxent was trained solely with Indian Ocean reefs, suitable habitat worldwide increased by 38% in RCP4.5 by 2100 and 28% in RCP8.5 by 2050. Global habitat loss by 2100 was just 10% for RCP8.5. This projection suggests that shallow tropical sites in the Indian Ocean basin experience conditions today that are most similar to future projections of worldwide conditions. Indian Ocean reefs may thus be ideal candidate regions from which to select the best strands of coral for potential re-seeding efforts. PMID:24340025

  18. Coral reef habitat response to climate change scenarios.

    PubMed

    Freeman, Lauren A; Kleypas, Joan A; Miller, Arthur J

    2013-01-01

    Coral reef ecosystems are threatened by both climate change and direct anthropogenic stress. Climate change will alter the physico-chemical environment that reefs currently occupy, leaving only limited regions that are conducive to reef habitation. Identifying these regions early may aid conservation efforts and inform decisions to transplant particular coral species or groups. Here a species distribution model (Maxent) is used to describe habitat suitable for coral reef growth. Two climate change scenarios (RCP4.5, RCP8.5) from the National Center for Atmospheric Research's Community Earth System Model were used with Maxent to determine environmental suitability for corals (order Scleractinia). Environmental input variables best at representing the limits of suitable reef growth regions were isolated using a principal component analysis. Climate-driven changes in suitable habitat depend strongly on the unique region of reefs used to train Maxent. Increased global habitat loss was predicted in both climate projections through the 21(st) century. A maximum habitat loss of 43% by 2100 was predicted in RCP4.5 and 82% in RCP8.5. When the model is trained solely with environmental data from the Caribbean/Atlantic, 83% of global habitat was lost by 2100 for RCP4.5 and 88% was lost for RCP8.5. Similarly, global runs trained only with Pacific Ocean reefs estimated that 60% of suitable habitat would be lost by 2100 in RCP4.5 and 90% in RCP8.5. When Maxent was trained solely with Indian Ocean reefs, suitable habitat worldwide increased by 38% in RCP4.5 by 2100 and 28% in RCP8.5 by 2050. Global habitat loss by 2100 was just 10% for RCP8.5. This projection suggests that shallow tropical sites in the Indian Ocean basin experience conditions today that are most similar to future projections of worldwide conditions. Indian Ocean reefs may thus be ideal candidate regions from which to select the best strands of coral for potential re-seeding efforts.

  19. Antarctic birds breed later in response to climate change.

    PubMed

    Barbraud, Christophe; Weimerskirch, Henri

    2006-04-18

    In the northern hemisphere, there is compelling evidence for climate-related advances of spring events, but no such long-term biological time series exist for the southern hemisphere. We have studied a unique data set of dates of first arrival and laying of first eggs over a 55-year period for the entire community of Antarctic seabirds in East Antarctica. The records over this long period show a general unexpected tendency toward later arrival and laying, an inverse trend to those observed in the northern hemisphere. Overall, species now arrive at their colonies 9.1 days later, on average, and lay eggs an average of 2.1 days later than in the early 1950s. Furthermore, these delays are linked to a decrease in sea ice extent that has occurred in eastern Antarctica, which underlies the contrasted effects of global climate change on species in Antarctica.

  20. A framework for assessing climate change vulnerability and identifying adaptation responses in the central hardwoods region

    Treesearch

    Patricia R. Butler; Leslie A. Brandt; Stephen D. Handler; Maria K. Janowiak; Patricia D. Shannon; Chris W. Swanston

    2014-01-01

    The Central Hardwood region contains a mosaic of forests, woodlands, savannas, and other ecosystems that will increasingly be affected by a changing climate over the next century. Understanding potential impacts is important to sustaining healthy forests under changing conditions. The objectives of the Climate Change Response Framework (forestadaptation.org) are to...

  1. Climate Change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cowie, Jonathan

    2001-05-01

    In recent years climate change has become recognised as the foremost environmental problem of the twenty-first century. Not only will climate change potentially affect the multibillion dollar energy strategies of countries worldwide, but it also could seriously affect many species, including our own. A fascinating introduction to the subject, this textbook provides a broad review of past, present and likely future climate change from the viewpoints of biology, ecology and human ecology. It will be of interest to a wide range of people, from students in the life sciences who need a brief overview of the basics of climate science, to atmospheric science, geography, and environmental science students who need to understand the biological and human ecological implications of climate change. It will also be a valuable reference for those involved in environmental monitoring, conservation, policy-making and policy lobbying. The first book to cover not only the human impacts on climate, but how climate change will affect humans and the species that we rely on Written in an accessible style, with specialist terms used only when necessary and thoroughly explained The author has years of experience conveying the views of biological science learned societies to policy-makers

  2. Changes in potential habitat of 147 North American breeding bird species in response to redistribution of trees and climate following predicted climate change

    Treesearch

    Stephen N. Matthews; Louis R. Iverson; Anantha M. Prasad; Matthew P. Peters

    2011-01-01

    Mounting evidence shows that organisms have already begun to respond to global climate change. Advances in our knowledge of how climate shapes species distributional patterns has helped us better understand the response of birds to climate change. However, the distribution of birds across the landscape is also driven by biotic and abiotic components, including habitat...

  3. Forest cover change, climate variability, and hydrological responses

    Treesearch

    Xiaohua Wei; Rita Winkler; Ge Sun

    2017-01-01

    Understanding ecohydrological response to environmental change is critical for protecting watershed functions, sustaining clean water supply, and other ecosystem services, safeguarding public safety, floods mitigation, and drought response. Understanding ecohyhdrological processes and their implications to forest and water management has become increasingly important...

  4. Climatic responses to tropical sea surface temperature changes on a ``greenhouse'' Earth

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Huber, Matthew; Sloan, L. Cirbus

    2000-08-01

    The uncertainty associated with tropical sea surface temperatures (SSTs) during past "greenhouse" climates may have important and unaccounted for effects. We explore early Paleogene climatic sensitivity to changes in tropical-subtropical SSTs with a general circulation model. We demonstrate that tropical SST changes have local and far-field climatic effects, underscoring their importance in understanding greenhouse climates. The responses of winds, upwelling, and surface water balance to tropical SST changes are substantial. Our results indicate that current tropical SST reconstructions may have a significant cool bias despite corrections and that the existence of hot (>30°C) tropical SSTs may be realistic for greenhouse climate intervals, including the Eocene.

  5. Beyond a warming fingerprint: individualistic biogeographic responses to heterogeneous climate change in California.

    PubMed

    Rapacciuolo, Giovanni; Maher, Sean P; Schneider, Adam C; Hammond, Talisin T; Jabis, Meredith D; Walsh, Rachel E; Iknayan, Kelly J; Walden, Genevieve K; Oldfather, Meagan F; Ackerly, David D; Beissinger, Steven R

    2014-09-01

    Understanding recent biogeographic responses to climate change is fundamental for improving our predictions of likely future responses and guiding conservation planning at both local and global scales. Studies of observed biogeographic responses to 20th century climate change have principally examined effects related to ubiquitous increases in temperature - collectively termed a warming fingerprint. Although the importance of changes in other aspects of climate - particularly precipitation and water availability - is widely acknowledged from a theoretical standpoint and supported by paleontological evidence, we lack a practical understanding of how these changes interact with temperature to drive biogeographic responses. Further complicating matters, differences in life history and ecological attributes may lead species to respond differently to the same changes in climate. Here, we examine whether recent biogeographic patterns across California are consistent with a warming fingerprint. We describe how various components of climate have changed regionally in California during the 20th century and review empirical evidence of biogeographic responses to these changes, particularly elevational range shifts. Many responses to climate change do not appear to be consistent with a warming fingerprint, with downslope shifts in elevation being as common as upslope shifts across a number of taxa and many demographic and community responses being inconsistent with upslope shifts. We identify a number of potential direct and indirect mechanisms for these responses, including the influence of aspects of climate change other than temperature (e.g., the shifting seasonal balance of energy and water availability), differences in each taxon's sensitivity to climate change, trophic interactions, and land-use change. Finally, we highlight the need to move beyond a warming fingerprint in studies of biogeographic responses by considering a more multifaceted view of climate

  6. Evolutionary and plastic responses to climate change in terrestrial plant populations.

    PubMed

    Franks, Steven J; Weber, Jennifer J; Aitken, Sally N

    2014-01-01

    As climate change progresses, we are observing widespread changes in phenotypes in many plant populations. Whether these phenotypic changes are directly caused by climate change, and whether they result from phenotypic plasticity or evolution, are active areas of investigation. Here, we review terrestrial plant studies addressing these questions. Plastic and evolutionary responses to climate change are clearly occurring. Of the 38 studies that met our criteria for inclusion, all found plastic or evolutionary responses, with 26 studies showing both. These responses, however, may be insufficient to keep pace with climate change, as indicated by eight of 12 studies that examined this directly. There is also mixed evidence for whether evolutionary responses are adaptive, and whether they are directly caused by contemporary climatic changes. We discuss factors that will likely influence the extent of plastic and evolutionary responses, including patterns of environmental changes, species' life history characteristics including generation time and breeding system, and degree and direction of gene flow. Future studies with standardized methodologies, especially those that use direct approaches assessing responses to climate change over time, and sharing of data through public databases, will facilitate better predictions of the capacity for plant populations to respond to rapid climate change.

  7. Evolutionary and plastic responses to climate change in terrestrial plant populations

    PubMed Central

    Franks, Steven J; Weber, Jennifer J; Aitken, Sally N

    2014-01-01

    As climate change progresses, we are observing widespread changes in phenotypes in many plant populations. Whether these phenotypic changes are directly caused by climate change, and whether they result from phenotypic plasticity or evolution, are active areas of investigation. Here, we review terrestrial plant studies addressing these questions. Plastic and evolutionary responses to climate change are clearly occurring. Of the 38 studies that met our criteria for inclusion, all found plastic or evolutionary responses, with 26 studies showing both. These responses, however, may be insufficient to keep pace with climate change, as indicated by eight of 12 studies that examined this directly. There is also mixed evidence for whether evolutionary responses are adaptive, and whether they are directly caused by contemporary climatic changes. We discuss factors that will likely influence the extent of plastic and evolutionary responses, including patterns of environmental changes, species’ life history characteristics including generation time and breeding system, and degree and direction of gene flow. Future studies with standardized methodologies, especially those that use direct approaches assessing responses to climate change over time, and sharing of data through public databases, will facilitate better predictions of the capacity for plant populations to respond to rapid climate change. PMID:24454552

  8. The Changing Climate.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Schneider, Stephen H.

    1989-01-01

    Discusses the global change of climate. Presents the trend of climate change with graphs. Describes mathematical climate models including expressions for the interacting components of the ocean-atmosphere system and equations representing the basic physical laws governing their behavior. Provides three possible responses on the change. (YP)

  9. The Changing Climate.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Schneider, Stephen H.

    1989-01-01

    Discusses the global change of climate. Presents the trend of climate change with graphs. Describes mathematical climate models including expressions for the interacting components of the ocean-atmosphere system and equations representing the basic physical laws governing their behavior. Provides three possible responses on the change. (YP)

  10. The Water Volume Changes of Lake Manas and Its Response to Climate Change and Human Activities

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xu, Suning; Yang, Jingchun; Li, Youli

    2014-05-01

    The water volume changes of the lake basin in China's arid northwest region can sensitively reflect the impact of climate change and human activities in upper stream area. Lake Manas is a terminal lake of Manas Valley, a typical Valley in Northern Xinjiang. Just like other lakes, tectonic activities, such as water conservancy projects and agriculture irrigation projects, have great impacts on its evolution and change. We have a research on the response to climate change and human activities since 1950s, taking the Lake Manas for example. Collect aerial photographs and satellite imagery in year of 1958,1964,1979,1989,1999,2001,2003, with 1:50,000 topographic maps, 1:10000 DEM and other types of Figure and data of Lake Manas, we calculate the changes of the water volume of the Lake in 7different time period. According to the analysis of weather and hydrology records in the past 50 years, this author construct the correlation curves among the flow rate of Manas River, the temperature and precipitation in its upper steam area. This study shows that the development of contemporary Lake Manas could be divided to three stages: high-water period (in late the 1950s), extinct period (between 1970s and 1990s), and recovering season (in the early 21st century). The high-water period in late 1950s and the recovering season in early 21st century are mostly the results of excessive wet climate in the drainage basin, while the extinct period between the 1970s and the 1990s is mostly the result of man-made water projects in its upper stream area.The impact of climate change mainly in: the impact of climate change on runoff upstream determine the inflows of Lake Manas; the impact of downstream climate on the combination of water and heat determine the evaporation. The impact of human activities mainly in: the water conservancy projects upstream and agriculture irrigation projects since 1954 result in the extinct period between 1970s and 1990s in Lake Manas. Key Words: Lake Manas

  11. Beyond a warming fingerprint: individualistic biogeographic responses to heterogeneous climate change in California

    PubMed Central

    Rapacciuolo, Giovanni; Maher, Sean P; Schneider, Adam C; Hammond, Talisin T; Jabis, Meredith D; Walsh, Rachel E; Iknayan, Kelly J; Walden, Genevieve K; Oldfather, Meagan F; Ackerly, David D; Beissinger, Steven R

    2014-01-01

    Understanding recent biogeographic responses to climate change is fundamental for improving our predictions of likely future responses and guiding conservation planning at both local and global scales. Studies of observed biogeographic responses to 20th century climate change have principally examined effects related to ubiquitous increases in temperature – collectively termed a warming fingerprint. Although the importance of changes in other aspects of climate – particularly precipitation and water availability – is widely acknowledged from a theoretical standpoint and supported by paleontological evidence, we lack a practical understanding of how these changes interact with temperature to drive biogeographic responses. Further complicating matters, differences in life history and ecological attributes may lead species to respond differently to the same changes in climate. Here, we examine whether recent biogeographic patterns across California are consistent with a warming fingerprint. We describe how various components of climate have changed regionally in California during the 20th century and review empirical evidence of biogeographic responses to these changes, particularly elevational range shifts. Many responses to climate change do not appear to be consistent with a warming fingerprint, with downslope shifts in elevation being as common as upslope shifts across a number of taxa and many demographic and community responses being inconsistent with upslope shifts. We identify a number of potential direct and indirect mechanisms for these responses, including the influence of aspects of climate change other than temperature (e.g., the shifting seasonal balance of energy and water availability), differences in each taxon's sensitivity to climate change, trophic interactions, and land-use change. Finally, we highlight the need to move beyond a warming fingerprint in studies of biogeographic responses by considering a more multifaceted view of climate

  12. The response of Lake Tahoe to climate change

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Sahoo, G.B.; Schladow, S.G.; Reuter, J.E.; Coats, R.; Dettinger, M.; Riverson, J.; Wolfe, B.; Costa-Cabral, M.

    2013-01-01

    Meteorology is the driving force for lake internal heating, cooling, mixing, and circulation. Thus continued global warming will affect the lake thermal properties, water level, internal nutrient loading, nutrient cycling, food-web characteristics, fish-habitat, aquatic ecosystem, and other important features of lake limnology. Using a 1-D numerical model - the Lake Clarity Model (LCM) - together with the down-scaled climatic data of the two emissions scenarios (B1 and A2) of the Geophysical Fluid Dynamics Laboratory (GFDL) Global Circulation Model, we found that Lake Tahoe will likely cease to mix to the bottom after about 2060 for A2 scenario, with an annual mixing depth of less than 200 m as the most common value. Deep mixing, which currently occurs on average every 3-4 years, will (under the GFDL B1 scenario) occur only four times during 2061 to 2098. When the lake fails to completely mix, the bottom waters are not replenished with dissolved oxygen and eventually dissolved oxygen at these depths will be depleted to zero. When this occurs, soluble reactive phosphorus (SRP) and ammonium-nitrogen (both biostimulatory) are released from the deep sediments and contribute approximately 51 % and 14 % of the total SRP and dissolved inorganic nitrogen load, respectively. The lake model suggests that climate change will drive the lake surface level down below the natural rim after 2085 for the GFDL A2 but not the GFDL B1 scenario. The results indicate that continued climate changes could pose serious threats to the characteristics of the Lake that are most highly valued. Future water quality planning must take these results into account.

  13. Sustainable occupational responses to climate change through lifestyle choices.

    PubMed

    Hocking, Clare; Kroksmark, Ulla

    2013-03-01

    Abstract Occupational therapists and occupational scientists are increasingly aware of the relationship between occupation and global climate change, with some working to raise awareness of the issues and others proposing that an occupational perspective can make a valuable contribution to understanding and addressing the issues. In this discussion paper the United Nations Global Survey on Sustainable Lifestyles ( 1 ), which reports young adults' beliefs about everyday occupations that have a substantial impact on the environment (food, housekeeping, and transportation) is introduced. The authors argue that the survey findings are a valuable resource for occupational therapists who are concerned about global climate change and work with young adults (age 18-35), providing valuable insights into their concerns and preferences in relation to sustainability. To illustrate the insights contained in the reports, findings from four countries are presented: New Zealand and Sweden, the authors' countries of origin, and the Philippines and Lebanon which have people living in New Zealand and Sweden. Application to individual and community-based interventions to promote more sustainable lifestyles is suggested, along with studies to examine the perspectives of young adults with a disability, as their concerns and sustainability preferences might differ due to the barriers that limit their participation in educational and vocational occupations.

  14. How does complex terrain influence responses of carbon and water cycle processes to climate variability and climate change?

    EPA Science Inventory

    We are pursuing the ambitious goal of understanding how complex terrain influences the responses of carbon and water cycle processes to climate variability and climate change. Our studies take place in H.J. Andrews Experimental Forest, an LTER (Long Term Ecological Research) site...

  15. How does complex terrain influence responses of carbon and water cycle processes to climate variability and climate change?

    EPA Science Inventory

    We are pursuing the ambitious goal of understanding how complex terrain influences the responses of carbon and water cycle processes to climate variability and climate change. Our studies take place in H.J. Andrews Experimental Forest, an LTER (Long Term Ecological Research) site...

  16. Idiosyncratic responses of grizzly bear habitat to climate change based on projected food resource changes.

    PubMed

    Roberts, David R; Nielsen, Scott E; Stenhouse, Gordon B

    2014-07-01

    Climate change vulnerability assessments for species of conservation concern often use species distribution and ecological niche modeling to project changes in habitat. One of many assumptions of these approaches is that food web dependencies are consistent in time and environmental space. Species at higher trophic levels that rely on the availability of species at lower trophic levels as food may be sensitive to extinction cascades initiated by changes in the habitat of key food resources. Here we assess climate change vulnerability for Ursus arctos (grizzly bears) in the southern Canadian Rocky Mountains using projected changes to 17 of the most commonly consumed plant food items. We used presence-absence information from 7088 field plots to estimate ecological niches and to project changes in future distributions of each species. Model projections indicated idiosyncratic responses among food items. Many food items persisted or even increased, although several species were found to be vulnerable based on declines or geographic shifts in suitable habitat. These included Hedysarum alpinum (alpine sweet vetch), a critical spring and autumn root-digging resource when little else is available. Potential habitat loss was also identified for three fruiting species of lower importance to bears: Empetrum nigrum (crowberry), Vaccinium scoparium (grouseberry), and Fragaria virginiana (strawberry). A general trend towards uphill migration of bear foods may result in higher vulnerability to bear populations at low elevations, which are also those that are most likely to have human-bear conflict problems. Regardless, a wide diet breadth of grizzly bears, as well as wide environmental niches of most food items, make climate change a much lower threat to grizzly bears than other bear species such as polar bears and panda bears. We cannot exclude, however, future alterations in human behavior and land use resulting from climate change that may reduce survival rates.

  17. Global climate change and planktic foraminiferal response in the Maastrichtian

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Abramovich, Sigal; Yovel-Corem, Shlomit; Almogi-Labin, Ahuva; Benjamini, Chaim

    2010-04-01

    The lengthy warm, stable climate of the Cretaceous terminated in the Campanian with a cooling trend, interrupted in the early and latest Maastrichtian by two events of global warming, at ˜70-68 Ma and at 65.78-65.57 Ma. These climatic oscillations had a profound effect on pelagic ecosystems, especially on planktic foraminiferal populations. Here we compare biotic responses in the tropical-subtropical (Tethyan) open ocean and mesotrophic (Zin Valley, Israel) and oligotrophic (Tunisia) slopes, which correlate directly with global warming and cooling. The two warming events coincide with blooms of Guembelitria, an extreme opportunist genus best known as the main survivor of the Cretaceous-Paleogene (K-Pg) catastrophe. In the Maastrichtian, Guembelitria bloomed in the uppermost surface water above shelf and slope environments but failed to reach the open ocean as it did at K-Pg. The coldest interval of the late Maastrichtian (˜68-65.78 Ma) is marked by an acme of the otherwise rare species Gansserina gansseri, a deep-dwelling keeled globotruncanid. The G. gansseri acme event can be traced from the deep ocean even onto the Tethyan slope, marking copious production and circulation of cold intermediate water. This acme is abruptly terminated by extinction of the species, a dramatic reversal attributed to a short-term global warming episode. This extinction corresponds precisely with the second bloom of Guembelitria that began ˜300 kyr prior to the K-Pg event. The antithetical relationship between blooming of Guembelitria and the G. gansseri acme reflects planktic foraminiferal sensitivity to warm-cool-warm-cool climatic oscillations marking the end of the Cretaceous.

  18. Rapid genetic divergence in response to 15 years of simulated climate change.

    PubMed

    Ravenscroft, Catherine H; Whitlock, Raj; Fridley, Jason D

    2015-11-01

    Genetic diversity may play an important role in allowing individual species to resist climate change, by permitting evolutionary responses. Our understanding of the potential for such responses to climate change remains limited, and very few experimental tests have been carried out within intact ecosystems. Here, we use amplified fragment length polymorphism (AFLP) data to assess genetic divergence and test for signatures of evolutionary change driven by long-term simulated climate change applied to natural grassland at Buxton Climate Change Impacts Laboratory (BCCIL). Experimental climate treatments were applied to grassland plots for 15 years using a replicated and spatially blocked design and included warming, drought and precipitation treatments. We detected significant genetic differentiation between climate change treatments and control plots in two coexisting perennial plant study species (Festuca ovina and Plantago lanceolata). Outlier analyses revealed a consistent signature of selection associated with experimental climate treatments at individual AFLP loci in P. lanceolata, but not in F. ovina. Average background differentiation at putatively neutral AFLP loci was close to zero, and genomewide genetic structure was associated neither with species abundance changes (demography) nor with plant community-level responses to long-term climate treatments. Our results demonstrate genetic divergence in response to a suite of climatic environments in reproductively mature populations of two perennial plant species and are consistent with an evolutionary response to climatic selection in P. lanceolata. These genetic changes have occurred in parallel with impacts on plant community structure and may have contributed to the persistence of individual species through 15 years of simulated climate change at BCCIL. © 2015 The Authors. Global Change Biology Bioenergy Published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  19. Effective and responsible teaching of climate change in Earth Science-related disciplines

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Robinson, Z. P.; Greenhough, B. J.

    2009-04-01

    Climate change is a core topic within Earth Science-related courses. This vast topic covers a wide array of different aspects that could be covered, from past climatic change across a vast range of scales to environmental (and social and economic) impacts of future climatic change and strategies for reducing anthropogenic climate change. The Earth Science disciplines play a crucial role in our understanding of past, present and future climate change and the Earth system in addition to understanding leading to development of strategies and technological solutions to achieve sustainability. However, an increased knowledge of the occurrence and causes of past (natural) climate changes can lead to a lessened concern and sense of urgency and responsibility amongst students in relation to anthropogenic causes of climatic change. Two concepts integral to the teaching of climate change are those of scientific uncertainty and complexity, yet an emphasis on these concepts can lead to scepticism about future predictions and a further loss of sense of urgency. The requirement to understand the nature of scientific uncertainty and think and move between different scales in particular relating an increased knowledge of longer timescale climatic change to recent (industrialised) climate change, are clearly areas of troublesome knowledge that affect students' sense of responsibility towards their role in achieving a sustainable society. Study of the attitudes of university students in a UK HE institution on a range of Earth Science-related programmes highlights a range of different attitudes in the student body towards the subject of climate change. Students express varied amounts of ‘climate change saturation' resulting from both media and curriculum coverage, a range of views relating to the significance of humans to the global climate and a range of opinions about the relevance of environmental citizenship to their degree programme. Climate change is therefore a challenging

  20. Climate change and environmentally responsible behavior on the Great Barrier Reef, Australia

    Treesearch

    Jee In Yoon; Gerard Kyle; Carena J. vanRiper; Stephen G. Sutton

    2012-01-01

    This study explored the relationship between Australians' perceptions of climate change, its impact on the Great Barrier Reef (GBR), and predictors of environmentally responsible behavior (ERB). Our hypothesized model suggested that general attitudes toward climate change, social pressure for engaging in ERBs (subjective norms), and perceived behavioral control (...

  1. How do various maize crop models vary in their responses to climate change factors?

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Potential consequences of climate change on crop production can be studied using mechanistic crop simulation models. While a broad variety of maize simulation models exist, it is not known whether different models give similar grain yield responses to changes in climatic factors, or whether they agr...

  2. Exploiting temporal variability to understand tree recruitment response to climate change

    Treesearch

    Ines Ibanez; James S. Clark; Shannon LaDeau; Janneke Hill Ris Lambers

    2007-01-01

    Predicting vegetation shifts under climate change is a challenging endeavor, given the complex interactions between biotic and abiotic variables that influence demographic rates. To determine how current trends and variation in climate change affect seedling establishment, we analyzed demographic responses to spatiotemporal variation to temperature and soil moisture in...

  3. Biological response to climate change on a tropical mountain

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pounds, J. Alan; Fogden, Michael P. L.; Campbell, John H.

    1999-04-01

    Recent warming has caused changes in species distribution and abundance, but the extent of the effects is unclear. Here we investigate whether such changes in highland forests at Monteverde, Costa Rica, are related to the increase in air temperatures that followed a step-like warming of tropical oceans in 1976 (refs4, 5). Twenty of 50 species of anurans (frogs and toads) in a 30-km2 study area, including the locally endemic golden toad (Bufo periglenes), disappeared following synchronous population crashes in 1987 (refs 6-8). Our results indicate that these crashes probably belong to a constellation of demographic changes that have altered communities of birds, reptiles and amphibians in the area and are linked to recent warming. The changes are all associated with patterns of dry-season mist frequency, which is negatively correlated with sea surface temperatures in the equatorial Pacific and has declined dramatically since the mid-1970s. The biological and climatic patterns suggest that atmospheric warming has raised the average altitude at the base of the orographic cloud bank, as predicted by the lifting-cloud-base hypothesis,.

  4. Global reductions in seafloor biomass in response to climate change.

    PubMed

    Jones, Daniel O B; Yool, Andrew; Wei, Chih-Lin; Henson, Stephanie A; Ruhl, Henry A; Watson, Reg A; Gehlen, Marion

    2014-06-01

    Seafloor organisms are vital for healthy marine ecosystems, contributing to elemental cycling, benthic remineralization, and ultimately sequestration of carbon. Deep-sea life is primarily reliant on the export flux of particulate organic carbon from the surface ocean for food, but most ocean biogeochemistry models predict global decreases in export flux resulting from 21st century anthropogenically induced warming. Here we show that decadal-to-century scale changes in carbon export associated with climate change lead to an estimated 5.2% decrease in future (2091-2100) global open ocean benthic biomass under RCP8.5 (reduction of 5.2 Mt C) compared with contemporary conditions (2006-2015). Our projections use multi-model mean export flux estimates from eight fully coupled earth system models, which contributed to the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project Phase 5, that have been forced by high and low representative concentration pathways (RCP8.5 and 4.5, respectively). These export flux estimates are used in conjunction with published empirical relationships to predict changes in benthic biomass. The polar oceans and some upwelling areas may experience increases in benthic biomass, but most other regions show decreases, with up to 38% reductions in parts of the northeast Atlantic. Our analysis projects a future ocean with smaller sized infaunal benthos, potentially reducing energy transfer rates though benthic multicellular food webs. More than 80% of potential deep-water biodiversity hotspots known around the world, including canyons, seamounts, and cold-water coral reefs, are projected to experience negative changes in biomass. These major reductions in biomass may lead to widespread change in benthic ecosystems and the functions and services they provide. © 2013 The Authors Global Change Biology Published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  5. A replicated climate change field experiment reveals rapid evolutionary response in an ecologically important soil invertebrate.

    PubMed

    Bataillon, Thomas; Galtier, Nicolas; Bernard, Aurelien; Cryer, Nicolai; Faivre, Nicolas; Santoni, Sylvain; Severac, Dany; Mikkelsen, Teis N; Larsen, Klaus S; Beier, Claus; Sørensen, Jesper G; Holmstrup, Martin; Ehlers, Bodil K

    2016-07-01

    Whether species can respond evolutionarily to current climate change is crucial for the persistence of many species. Yet, very few studies have examined genetic responses to climate change in manipulated experiments carried out in natural field conditions. We examined the evolutionary response to climate change in a common annelid worm using a controlled replicated experiment where climatic conditions were manipulated in a natural setting. Analyzing the transcribed genome of 15 local populations, we found that about 12% of the genetic polymorphisms exhibit differences in allele frequencies associated to changes in soil temperature and soil moisture. This shows an evolutionary response to realistic climate change happening over short-time scale, and calls for incorporating evolution into models predicting future response of species to climate change. It also shows that designed climate change experiments coupled with genome sequencing offer great potential to test for the occurrence (or lack) of an evolutionary response. © 2016 The Authors. Global Change Biology Published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  6. Responses of energy use to climate change: A climate modeling study

    SciTech Connect

    Erickson III, David J; Hadley, Stanton W; Blasing, T J; Hernandez Figueroa, Jose L; Broniak, C

    2006-01-01

    [1] Using a general-circulation climate model to drive an energy-use model, we projected changes in USA energy-use and in corresponding fossil-fuel CO2 emissions through year 2025 for a low (1.2 XC) and a high (3.4 XC) temperature response to CO2 doubling. The low- T scenario had a cumulative (2003-2025) energy increase of 1.09 quadrillion Btu (quads) for cooling/heating demand. Northeastern states had net energy reductions for cooling/heating over the entire period, but in most other regions energy increases for cooling outweighed energy decreases for heating. The high-∆T scenario had significantly increased warming, especially in winter, so decreased heating needs led to a cumulative (2003-2025) heating/cooling energy decrease of 0.82 quads. In both scenarios, CO2 emissions increases from electricity generation outweighed CO2 emissions decreases from reduced heating needs. The results reveal the intricate energy-economy structure that must be considered in projecting consequences of climate warming for energy, economics, and fossil-fuel carbon emissions.

  7. Responses of energy use to climate change: A climate modeling study

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hadley, Stanton W.; Erickson, David J.; Hernandez, Jose Luis; Broniak, Christine T.; Blasing, T. J.

    2006-09-01

    Using a general-circulation climate model to drive an energy-use model, we projected changes in USA energy-use and in corresponding fossil-fuel CO2 emissions through year 2025 for a low (1.2°C) and a high (3.4°C) temperature response to CO2 doubling. The low-ΔT scenario had a cumulative (2003-2025) energy increase of 1.09 quadrillion Btu (quads) for cooling/heating demand. Northeastern states had net energy reductions for cooling/heating over the entire period, but in most other regions energy increases for cooling outweighed energy decreases for heating. The high-ΔT scenario had significantly increased warming, especially in winter, so decreased heating needs led to a cumulative (2003-2025) heating/cooling energy decrease of 0.82 quads. In both scenarios, CO2 emissions increases from electricity generation outweighed CO2 emissions decreases from reduced heating needs. The results reveal the intricate energy-economy structure that must be considered in projecting consequences of climate warming for energy, economics, and fossil-fuel carbon emissions.

  8. Bird response to future climate and forest management focused on mitigating climate change

    Treesearch

    Jaymi J. LeBrun; Jeffrey E. Schneiderman; Frank R. Thompson; William D. Dijak; Jacob S. Fraser; Hong S. He; Joshua J. Millspaugh

    2016-01-01

    Context. Global temperatures are projected to increase and affect forests and wildlife populations. Forest management can potentially mitigate climateinduced changes through promoting carbon sequestration, forest resilience, and facilitated change. Objectives. We modeled direct and indirect effects of climate change on avian...

  9. Trends in Global Vegetation Activity and Climatic Drivers Indicate a Decoupled Response to Climate Change.

    PubMed

    Schut, Antonius G T; Ivits, Eva; Conijn, Jacob G; Ten Brink, Ben; Fensholt, Rasmus

    2015-01-01

    Detailed understanding of a possible decoupling between climatic drivers of plant productivity and the response of ecosystems vegetation is required. We compared trends in six NDVI metrics (1982-2010) derived from the GIMMS3g dataset with modelled biomass productivity and assessed uncertainty in trend estimates. Annual total biomass weight (TBW) was calculated with the LINPAC model. Trends were determined using a simple linear regression, a Thiel-Sen medium slope and a piecewise regression (PWR) with two segments. Values of NDVI metrics were related to Net Primary Production (MODIS-NPP) and TBW per biome and land-use type. The simple linear and Thiel-Sen trends did not differ much whereas PWR increased the fraction of explained variation, depending on the NDVI metric considered. A positive trend in TBW indicating more favorable climatic conditions was found for 24% of pixels on land, and for 5% a negative trend. A decoupled trend, indicating positive TBW trends and monotonic negative or segmented and negative NDVI trends, was observed for 17-36% of all productive areas depending on the NDVI metric used. For only 1-2% of all pixels in productive areas, a diverging and greening trend was found despite a strong negative trend in TBW. The choice of NDVI metric used strongly affected outcomes on regional scales and differences in the fraction of explained variation in MODIS-NPP between biomes were large, and a combination of NDVI metrics is recommended for global studies. We have found an increasing difference between trends in climatic drivers and observed NDVI for large parts of the globe. Our findings suggest that future scenarios must consider impacts of constraints on plant growth such as extremes in weather and nutrient availability to predict changes in NPP and CO2 sequestration capacity.

  10. Trends in Global Vegetation Activity and Climatic Drivers Indicate a Decoupled Response to Climate Change

    PubMed Central

    Schut, Antonius G. T.; Ivits, Eva; Conijn, Jacob G.; ten Brink, Ben; Fensholt, Rasmus

    2015-01-01

    Detailed understanding of a possible decoupling between climatic drivers of plant productivity and the response of ecosystems vegetation is required. We compared trends in six NDVI metrics (1982–2010) derived from the GIMMS3g dataset with modelled biomass productivity and assessed uncertainty in trend estimates. Annual total biomass weight (TBW) was calculated with the LINPAC model. Trends were determined using a simple linear regression, a Thiel-Sen medium slope and a piecewise regression (PWR) with two segments. Values of NDVI metrics were related to Net Primary Production (MODIS-NPP) and TBW per biome and land-use type. The simple linear and Thiel-Sen trends did not differ much whereas PWR increased the fraction of explained variation, depending on the NDVI metric considered. A positive trend in TBW indicating more favorable climatic conditions was found for 24% of pixels on land, and for 5% a negative trend. A decoupled trend, indicating positive TBW trends and monotonic negative or segmented and negative NDVI trends, was observed for 17–36% of all productive areas depending on the NDVI metric used. For only 1–2% of all pixels in productive areas, a diverging and greening trend was found despite a strong negative trend in TBW. The choice of NDVI metric used strongly affected outcomes on regional scales and differences in the fraction of explained variation in MODIS-NPP between biomes were large, and a combination of NDVI metrics is recommended for global studies. We have found an increasing difference between trends in climatic drivers and observed NDVI for large parts of the globe. Our findings suggest that future scenarios must consider impacts of constraints on plant growth such as extremes in weather and nutrient availability to predict changes in NPP and CO2 sequestration capacity. PMID:26466347

  11. Non-linearity dynamics in ecosystem response to climate change: Case studies and policy implications

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Burkett, V.R.; Wilcox, D.A.; Stottlemyer, R.; Barrow, W.; Fagre, D.; Baron, J.; Nielsen, J.L.; Allen, C.D.; Peterson, D.L.; Ruggerone, G.; Doyle, T.

    2005-01-01

    Many biological, hydrological, and geological processes are interactively linked in ecosystems. These ecological phenomena normally vary within bounded ranges, but rapid, nonlinear changes to markedly different conditions can be triggered by even small differences if threshold values are exceeded. Intrinsic and extrinsic ecological thresholds can lead to effects that cascade among systems, precluding accurate modeling and prediction of system response to climate change. Ten case studies from North America illustrate how changes in climate cna lead to rapid, threshold-type responses within ecological communities; the case studies also highlight the role of human activities that alter the rate or direction of system response to climate change. Understanding and anticipating nonlinear dynamics are important aspects of adaptation planning since responses of biological resources to changes in the physical climate system are not necessarily proportional and sometimes, as in the case of complex ecological systems, inherently nonlinear.

  12. Nonlinear dynamics in ecosystem response to climatic change: Case studies and policy implications

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Burkett, Virginia R.; Wilcox, Douglas A.; Stottlemyer, Robert; Barrow, Wylie; Fagre, Dan; Baron, Jill; Price, Jeff; Nielsen, Jennifer L.; Allen, Craig D.; Peterson, David L.; Ruggerone, Greg; Doyle, Thomas

    2005-01-01

    Many biological, hydrological, and geological processes are interactively linked in ecosystems. These ecological phenomena normally vary within bounded ranges, but rapid, nonlinear changes to markedly different conditions can be triggered by even small differences if threshold values are exceeded. Intrinsic and extrinsic ecological thresholds can lead to effects that cascade among systems, precluding accurate modeling and prediction of system response to climate change. Ten case studies from North America illustrate how changes in climate can lead to rapid, threshold-type responses within ecological communities; the case studies also highlight the role of human activities that alter the rate or direction of system response to climate change. Understanding and anticipating nonlinear dynamics are important aspects of adaptation planning since responses of biological resources to changes in the physical climate system are not necessarily proportional and sometimes, as in the case of complex ecological systems, inherently nonlinear.

  13. Global reductions in seafloor biomass in response to climate change

    PubMed Central

    Jones, Daniel O B; Yool, Andrew; Wei, Chih-Lin; Henson, Stephanie A; Ruhl, Henry A; Watson, Reg A; Gehlen, Marion

    2014-01-01

    Seafloor organisms are vital for healthy marine ecosystems, contributing to elemental cycling, benthic remineralization, and ultimately sequestration of carbon. Deep-sea life is primarily reliant on the export flux of particulate organic carbon from the surface ocean for food, but most ocean biogeochemistry models predict global decreases in export flux resulting from 21st century anthropogenically induced warming. Here we show that decadal-to-century scale changes in carbon export associated with climate change lead to an estimated 5.2% decrease in future (2091–2100) global open ocean benthic biomass under RCP8.5 (reduction of 5.2 Mt C) compared with contemporary conditions (2006–2015). Our projections use multi-model mean export flux estimates from eight fully coupled earth system models, which contributed to the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project Phase 5, that have been forced by high and low representative concentration pathways (RCP8.5 and 4.5, respectively). These export flux estimates are used in conjunction with published empirical relationships to predict changes in benthic biomass. The polar oceans and some upwelling areas may experience increases in benthic biomass, but most other regions show decreases, with up to 38% reductions in parts of the northeast Atlantic. Our analysis projects a future ocean with smaller sized infaunal benthos, potentially reducing energy transfer rates though benthic multicellular food webs. More than 80% of potential deep-water biodiversity hotspots known around the world, including canyons, seamounts, and cold-water coral reefs, are projected to experience negative changes in biomass. These major reductions in biomass may lead to widespread change in benthic ecosystems and the functions and services they provide. PMID:24382828

  14. A model of northern treeline dynamics in response to transient changes in climate

    SciTech Connect

    Stuart, C.F. III; Starfield, A.M. )

    1994-06-01

    In order to predict the future distribution of boreal vegetation, we developed what, to our knowledge, is the first model of ecosystem change in response to transient changes in climate and disturbance regime over the next 50-500 yr. The model develops scenarios of change in disturbance regime and ecosystem type in what is currently arctic tundra in response to GCM-based scenarios of climate change. Seed availability, tree growth rate, and probability of fire were the model parameters that most strongly influenced the balance between tundra and boreal forest during transitional climates. The rate of climatic warming strongly affected the time lag between climate change and the simulated ecosystem response but had less effect on the rate or pattern of ecosystem change. The model calculated that a ramped change of 3[degrees] in the next century (corresponding to average rate of warming predicted by GCMs) would lead to a 150 yr lag preceeding any change from tundra to forest, followed by rates of forestation of up to 6-12% per decade. The model predicted that tundra would first be invaded by conifer forests, but that the proportion of broad-leafed deciduous forest would increase as climate continued to warm due to increased fire frequency. The pattern of climatic warming had strong effects on simulated rates of conversion from tundra to forest. Rapid step changes in climate or increases in climatic variability both promoted more rapid ecosystem change than did ramped change in climate or climatic oscillations, particularly when oscillations were long relative to the time required for tree growth to reproductive maturity.

  15. Response of Glaciers to Climate Change in Northwest China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Z.; Wang, P.

    2015-12-01

    In Northwest China, an extremely dry region, more than 20,000 mountain glaciers are developed. Glacial melt water is vital for local water resources, ecosystem in the lower reaches, peoples' living and city development there. During the past several decades, due to climate warming, the most glaciers in NW China are in a state of rapid retreating. To obtain the general idea on response of glaciers in that region, Tianshan Glaciological Station, Chinese Academy of Sciences selected more than ten glaciers in six sub-regions along Altai Mountain, Tianshan and Qilian Mountain, respectively, doing in-situ observations. Based on field observation and remote sensing technique, this study has revealed that the area reductions in different regions range between 8.8%~34.2 % during the past four decades. The potential impact of the glacier recession on water resource in future will be spatially different. For the Tarim River, the glacier runoff is estimated to maintain its current level or increase somewhat in next 30~50 years. In the north slope of Tianshan, the glaciers with a size smaller than 1 km2 are most likely to be melted away in next 20~40 years, and those larger than 5 km2 are melting intensively. In eastern Xinjiang, because the number of the glaciers is small and also because the climate is extremely dry, the glacier retreating are causing the water shortage problem. For Ili River and Irtysh River, because they are dominant by snow melt runoff, the impact of the glacier shrinkage and temperature rise would be limited on the quantity of the river runoff, but significant on the annual distribution of the river runoff. For Qilian Mountains, glaciers are quite small. The vanishing of small glacier will have significant impact on local water resources in near future.

  16. Phylogenetic conservatism and trait correlates of spring phenological responses to climate change in northeast China.

    PubMed

    Du, Yanjun; Chen, Jingru; Willis, Charles G; Zhou, Zhiqiang; Liu, Tong; Dai, Wujun; Zhao, Yuan; Ma, Keping

    2017-09-01

    Climate change has resulted in major changes in plant phenology across the globe that includes leaf-out date and flowering time. The ability of species to respond to climate change, in part, depends on their response to climate as a phenological cue in general. Species that are not phenologically responsive may suffer in the face of continued climate change. Comparative studies of phenology have found phylogeny to be a reliable predictor of mean leaf-out date and flowering time at both the local and global scales. This is less true for flowering time response (i.e., the correlation between phenological timing and climate factors), while no study to date has explored whether the response of leaf-out date to climate factors exhibits phylogenetic signal. We used a 52-year observational phenological dataset for 52 woody species from the Forest Botanical Garden of Heilongjiang Province, China, to test phylogenetic signal in leaf-out date and flowering time, as well as, the response of these two phenological traits to both temperature and winter precipitation. Leaf-out date and flowering time were significantly responsive to temperature for most species, advancing, on average, 3.11 and 2.87 day/°C, respectively. Both leaf-out and flowering, and their responses to temperature exhibited significant phylogenetic signals. The response of leaf-out date to precipitation exhibited no phylogenetic signal, while flowering time response to precipitation did. Native species tended to have a weaker flowering response to temperature than non-native species. Earlier leaf-out species tended to have a greater response to winter precipitation. This study is the first to assess phylogenetic signal of leaf-out response to climate change, which suggests, that climate change has the potential to shape the plant communities, not only through flowering sensitivity, but also through leaf-out sensitivity.

  17. The role of science assessments in policy making in response to climatic change

    SciTech Connect

    Jager, J.

    1996-12-31

    The paper traces three scientific debates on issues related to anthropogenic climate change: the introduction of non-CO{sub 2} greenhouse gases into assessments; the assessment of the climate sensitivity; and the changing evaluations of the risk of sea-level rise. These stories illustrate how science assessments affected the perceived urgency of the response as well as showing the nature of climate change assessments and the role they have played in developing a policy response to climatic change. Looking at major assessments of the magnitude and timing of the potential climatic change also gives clear indications of factors that contribute to a successful scientific assessment. These factors include broad international participation, careful preparation of peer-reviewed executive summaries and the avoidance of parallel assessments which require input from one another. The material presented in this paper is based on the output from a major international project on Social Learning in the Management of Global Environmental Risks.

  18. Climate change: present and future risks to health, and necessary responses.

    PubMed

    McMichael, A J; Lindgren, E

    2011-11-01

    Recent observed changes in Earth's climate, to which humans have contributed substantially, are affecting various health outcomes. These include altered distributions of some infectious disease vectors (ticks at high latitudes, malaria mosquitoes at high altitudes), and an uptrend in extreme weather events and associated deaths, injuries and other health outcomes. Future climate change, if unchecked, will have increasing, mostly adverse, health impacts - both direct and indirect. Climate change will amplify health problems in vulnerable regions, influence infectious disease emergence, affect food yields and nutrition, increase risks of climate-related disasters and impair mental health. The health sector should assist society understand the risks to health and the needed responses.

  19. The importance of phylogeny to the study of phenological response to global climate change.

    PubMed

    Davis, Charles C; Willis, Charles G; Primack, Richard B; Miller-Rushing, Abraham J

    2010-10-12

    Climate change has resulted in major changes in the phenology--i.e. the timing of seasonal activities, such as flowering and bird migration--of some species but not others. These differential responses have been shown to result in ecological mismatches that can have negative fitness consequences. However, the ways in which climate change has shaped changes in biodiversity within and across communities are not well understood. Here, we build on our previous results that established a link between plant species' phenological response to climate change and a phylogenetic bias in species' decline in the eastern United States. We extend a similar approach to plant and bird communities in the United States and the UK that further demonstrates that climate change has differentially impacted species based on their phylogenetic relatedness and shared phenological responses. In plants, phenological responses to climate change are often shared among closely related species (i.e. clades), even between geographically disjunct communities. And in some cases, this has resulted in a phylogenetically biased pattern of non-native species success. In birds, the pattern of decline is phylogenetically biased but is not solely explained by phenological response, which suggests that other traits may better explain this pattern. These results illustrate the ways in which phylogenetic thinking can aid in making generalizations of practical importance and enhance efforts to predict species' responses to future climate change.

  20. The importance of phylogeny to the study of phenological response to global climate change

    PubMed Central

    Davis, Charles C.; Willis, Charles G.; Primack, Richard B.; Miller-Rushing, Abraham J.

    2010-01-01

    Climate change has resulted in major changes in the phenology—i.e. the timing of seasonal activities, such as flowering and bird migration—of some species but not others. These differential responses have been shown to result in ecological mismatches that can have negative fitness consequences. However, the ways in which climate change has shaped changes in biodiversity within and across communities are not well understood. Here, we build on our previous results that established a link between plant species' phenological response to climate change and a phylogenetic bias in species' decline in the eastern United States. We extend a similar approach to plant and bird communities in the United States and the UK that further demonstrates that climate change has differentially impacted species based on their phylogenetic relatedness and shared phenological responses. In plants, phenological responses to climate change are often shared among closely related species (i.e. clades), even between geographically disjunct communities. And in some cases, this has resulted in a phylogenetically biased pattern of non-native species success. In birds, the pattern of decline is phylogenetically biased but is not solely explained by phenological response, which suggests that other traits may better explain this pattern. These results illustrate the ways in which phylogenetic thinking can aid in making generalizations of practical importance and enhance efforts to predict species' responses to future climate change. PMID:20819813

  1. Heating up Climate Literacy Education: Understanding Teachers' and Students' Motivational and Affective Response to Climate Change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sinatra, G. M.

    2011-12-01

    Changing students' ideas about controversial scientific issues, such as human-induced climate change, presents unique challenges for educators (Lombardi & Sinatra, 2010; Sinatra & Mason, 2008). First, climate science is complex and requires "systems thinking," or the ability to think and reason abstractly about emergent systems (Goldstone & Sakamoto, 2003). Appreciating the intricacies of complex systems and emergent processes has proven challenging for students (Chi, 2005). In addition to these challenges, there are specific misconceptions that may lead thinking astray on the issue of global climate change, such as the distinction between weather and climate (Lombardi & Sinatra, 2010). As an example, when students are asked about their views on climate change, they often recall individual storm events or very cold periods and use their personal experiences and recollections of short-term temperature fluctuations to assess whether the planet is warming. Beyond the conceptual difficulties, controversial topics offer another layer of challenge. Such topics are often embedded in complex socio-cultural and political contexts, have a high degree of uncertainty, and may be perceived by individuals as in conflict with their personal or religious beliefs (Levinson, 2006, Sinatra, Kardash, Taasoobshirazi, & Lombardi, 2011). Individuals are often committed to their own views on socio-scientific issues and this commitment may serve as a motivation to actively resist new ideas (Dole & Sinatra, 1998). Individuals may also have strong emotions associated with their misconceptions (Broughton, Pekrun, & Sinatra, 2011). Negative emotions, misconceptions, and resistance do not make a productive combination for learning. Further, teachers who find human-induced climate change implausible have been shown to hold negative emotions about having to teach about climate change (Lombardi & Sinatra, in preparation), which could affect how they present the topic to students. In this

  2. Changing Climate Drives Lagging and Accelerating Glacier Responses and Accelerating Adjustments of the Hazard Regime

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kargel, Jeffrey

    2013-04-01

    It is virtually universally recognized among climate and cryospheric scientists that climate and greenhouse gas abundances are closely correlated. Disagreements mainly pertain to the fundamental triggers for large fluctuations in climate and greenhouse gases during the pre-industrial era, and exactly how coupling is achieved amongst the dynamic solid Earth, the Sun, orbital and rotational dynamics, greenhouse gas abundances, and climate. Also unsettled is the climate sensitivity defined as the absolute linkage between the magnitude of climate warming/cooling and greenhouse gas increase/decrease. Important questions concern lagging responses (either greenhouse gases lagging climate fluctuations, or vice versa) and the causes of the lags. In terms of glacier and ice sheet responses to climate change, there also exist several processes causing lagging responses to climate change inputs. The simplest parameterization giving a glacier's lagging response time, τ, is that given by Jóhanneson et al. (1989), modified slightly here as τ = b/h, where b is a measure of ablation rate and h is a measure of glacier thickness. The exact definitions of τ, b, and h are subject to some interpretive license, but for a back-of-the-envelope approximation, we may take b as the magnitude of the mean ablation rate over the whole ablation area, and h as the mean glacier thickness in the glacier ablation zone. τ remains a bit ambiguous but may be considered as an exponential time scale for a decreasing response of b to a climatic step change. For some climate changes, b and h can be taken as the values prior to the climate change, but for large climatic shifts, this parameterization must be iterated. The actual response of a glacier at any time is the sum of exponentially decreasing responses from past changes. (Several aspects of glacier dynamics cause various glacier responses to differ from this idealized glacier-response theory.) Some important details relating to the retreat (or

  3. Is Dealing with Climate Change a Corporation’s Responsibility? A Social Contract Perspective

    PubMed Central

    Unsworth, Kerrie L.; Russell, Sally V.; Davis, Matthew C.

    2016-01-01

    In this paper, we argue that individuals – as members of society – play an important role in the expectations of whether or not companies are responsible for addressing environmental issues, and whether or not governments should regulate them. From this perspective of corporate social responsibility as a social contract we report the results of a survey of 1066 individuals. The aim of the survey was to assess participants’ belief in anthropogenic climate change, free-market ideology, and beliefs around who is responsible for dealing with climate change. Results showed that both climate change views and free market ideology have a strong effect on beliefs that companies are responsible for dealing with climate change and on support for regulatory policy to that end. Furthermore, we found that free market ideology is a barrier in the support of corporate regulatory policy. The implications of these findings for research, policy, and practice are discussed. PMID:27588009

  4. Is Dealing with Climate Change a Corporation's Responsibility? A Social Contract Perspective.

    PubMed

    Unsworth, Kerrie L; Russell, Sally V; Davis, Matthew C

    2016-01-01

    In this paper, we argue that individuals - as members of society - play an important role in the expectations of whether or not companies are responsible for addressing environmental issues, and whether or not governments should regulate them. From this perspective of corporate social responsibility as a social contract we report the results of a survey of 1066 individuals. The aim of the survey was to assess participants' belief in anthropogenic climate change, free-market ideology, and beliefs around who is responsible for dealing with climate change. Results showed that both climate change views and free market ideology have a strong effect on beliefs that companies are responsible for dealing with climate change and on support for regulatory policy to that end. Furthermore, we found that free market ideology is a barrier in the support of corporate regulatory policy. The implications of these findings for research, policy, and practice are discussed.

  5. Morphological variation in salamanders and their potential response to climate change.

    PubMed

    Ficetola, Gentile Francesco; Colleoni, Emiliano; Renaud, Julien; Scali, Stefano; Padoa-Schioppa, Emilio; Thuiller, Wilfried

    2016-06-01

    Despite the recognition that some species might quickly adapt to new conditions under climate change, demonstrating and predicting such a fundamental response is challenging. Morphological variations in response to climate may be caused by evolutionary changes or phenotypic plasticity, or both, but teasing apart these processes is difficult. Here, we built on the number of thoracic vertebrae (NTV) in ectothermic vertebrates, a known genetically based feature, to establish a link with body size and evaluate how climate change might affect the future morphological response of this group of species. First, we show that in old-world salamanders, NTV variation is strongly related to changes in body size. Secondly, using 22 salamander species as a case study, we found support for relationships between the spatial variation in selected bioclimatic variables and NTV for most of species. For 44% of species, precipitation and aridity were the predominant drivers of geographical variation of the NTV. Temperature features were dominant for 31% of species, while for 19% temperature and precipitation played a comparable role. This two-step analysis demonstrates that ectothermic vertebrates may evolve in response to climate change by modifying the number of thoracic vertebrae. These findings allow to develop scenarios for potential morphological evolution under future climate change and to identify areas and species in which the most marked evolutionary responses are expected. Resistance to climate change estimated from species distribution models was positively related to present-day species morphological response, suggesting that the ability of morphological evolution may play a role for species' persistence under climate change. The possibility that present-day capacity for local adaptation might help the resistance response to climate change can be integrated into analyses of the impact of global changes and should also be considered when planning management actions favouring

  6. Morphological variation in salamanders and their potential response to climate change

    PubMed Central

    Ficetola, Gentile Francesco; Colleoni, Emiliano; Renaud, Julien; Scali, Stefano; Padoa-Schioppa, Emilio; Thuiller, Wilfried

    2016-01-01

    Despite the recognition that some species might quickly adapt to new conditions under climate change, demonstrating and predicting such a fundamental response is challenging. Morphological variations in response to climate may be caused by evolutionary changes or phenotypic plasticity, or both, but teasing apart these processes is difficult. Here we built on the number of thoracic vertebrae (NTV) in ectothermic vertebrates, a known genetically-based feature, to establish a link with body size and evaluate how climate change might affect the future morphological response of this group of species. First we show that in old-world salamanders, NTV variation is strongly related to changes in body size. Secondly, using 22 salamander species as a case study, we found support for relationships between the spatial variation in selected bioclimatic variables and NTV for most of species. For 44% of species, precipitation and aridity were the predominant drivers of geographical variation of the NTV. Temperature features were dominant for 31% of species, while for 19% temperature and precipitation played a comparable role. This two-step analysis demonstrates that ectothermic vertebrates may evolve in response to climate change by modifying the number of thoracic vertebrae. These findings allow to develop scenarios for potential morphological evolution under future climate change, and to identify areas and species in which the most marked evolutionary responses are expected. Resistance to climate change estimated from species distribution models was positively related to present-day species morphological response, suggesting that the ability of morphological evolution may play a role for species’ persistence under climate change. The possibility that present-day capacity for local adaptation might help the resistance response to climate change can be integrated into analyses of the impact of global changes, and should also be considered when planning management actions

  7. Separating the role of biotic interactions and climate in determining adaptive response of plants to climate change.

    PubMed

    Tomiolo, Sara; Van der Putten, Wim H; Tielbörger, Katja

    2015-05-01

    Altered rainfall regimes will greatly affect the response of plant species to climate change. However, little is known about how direct effects of changing precipitation on plant performance may depend on other abiotic factors and biotic interactions. We used reciprocal transplants between climatically very different sites with simultaneous manipulation of soil, plant population origin, and neighbor conditions to evaluate local adaptation and possible adaptive response of four Eastern Mediterranean annual plant species to climate change. The effect of site on plant performance was negligible, but soil origin had a strong effect on fecundity, most likely due to differential water retaining ability. Competition by neighbors strongly reduced fitness. We separated the effects of the abiotic and biotic soil properties on plant performance by repeating the field experiment in a greenhouse under homogenous environmental conditions and including a soil biota manipulation treatment. As in the field, plant performance differed among soil origins and neighbor treatments. Moreover, we found plant species-specific responses to soil biota that may be best explained by the differential sensitivity to negative and positive soil biota effects. Overall, under the conditions of our experiment with two contrasting sites, biotic interactions had a strong effect on plant fitness that interacted with and eventually overrode climate. Because climate and biotic interactions covary, reciprocal transplants and climate gradient studies should consider soil biotic interactions and abiotic conditions when evaluating climate change effects on plant performance.

  8. Contrasting urban and rural heat stress responses to climate change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fischer, E. M.; Oleson, K. W.; Lawrence, D. M.

    2012-02-01

    Hot temperatures in combination with high humidity cause human discomfort and may increase morbidity and mortality. A global climate model with an embedded urban model is used to explore the urban-rural contrast in the wet-bulb globe temperature, a heat stress index accounting for temperature and humidity. Wet-bulb globe temperatures are calculated at each model time step to resolve the heat stress diurnal cycle. The model simulates substantially higher heat stress in urban areas compared to neighbouring rural areas. Urban humidity deficit only weakly offsets the enhanced heat stress due to the large night-time urban heat island. The urban-rural contrast in heat stress is most pronounced at night and over mid-latitudes and subtropics. During heatwaves, the urban heat stress amplification is particularly pronounced. Heat stress strongly increases with doubled CO2 concentrations over both urban and rural surfaces. The tropics experience the greatest increase in number of high-heat-stress nights, despite a relatively weak ˜2°C warming. Given the lack of a distinct annual cycle and high relative humidity, the modest tropical warming leads to exceedance of the present-day record levels during more than half of the year in tropical regions, where adaptive capacity is often low. While the absolute urban and rural heat stress response to 2 × CO2 is similar, the occurrence of nights with extremely high heat stress increases more in cities than surrounding rural areas.

  9. Earth's changing global atmospheric energy cycle in response to climate change

    PubMed Central

    Pan, Yefeng; Li, Liming; Jiang, Xun; Li, Gan; Zhang, Wentao; Wang, Xinyue; Ingersoll, Andrew P.

    2017-01-01

    The Lorenz energy cycle is widely used to investigate atmospheres and climates on planets. However, the long-term temporal variations of such an energy cycle have not yet been explored. Here we use three independent meteorological data sets from the modern satellite era, to examine the temporal characteristics of the Lorenz energy cycle of Earth's global atmosphere in response to climate change. The total mechanical energy of the global atmosphere basically remains constant with time, but the global-average eddy energies show significant positive trends. The spatial investigations suggest that these positive trends are concentrated in the Southern Hemisphere. Significant positive trends are also found in the conversion, generation and dissipation rates of energies. The positive trends in the dissipation rates of kinetic energies suggest that the efficiency of the global atmosphere as a heat engine increased during the modern satellite era. PMID:28117324

  10. Earth's changing global atmospheric energy cycle in response to climate change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pan, Yefeng; Li, Liming; Jiang, Xun; Li, Gan; Zhang, Wentao; Wang, Xinyue; Ingersoll, Andrew P.

    2017-01-01

    The Lorenz energy cycle is widely used to investigate atmospheres and climates on planets. However, the long-term temporal variations of such an energy cycle have not yet been explored. Here we use three independent meteorological data sets from the modern satellite era, to examine the temporal characteristics of the Lorenz energy cycle of Earth's global atmosphere in response to climate change. The total mechanical energy of the global atmosphere basically remains constant with time, but the global-average eddy energies show significant positive trends. The spatial investigations suggest that these positive trends are concentrated in the Southern Hemisphere. Significant positive trends are also found in the conversion, generation and dissipation rates of energies. The positive trends in the dissipation rates of kinetic energies suggest that the efficiency of the global atmosphere as a heat engine increased during the modern satellite era.

  11. Earth's changing global atmospheric energy cycle in response to climate change.

    PubMed

    Pan, Yefeng; Li, Liming; Jiang, Xun; Li, Gan; Zhang, Wentao; Wang, Xinyue; Ingersoll, Andrew P

    2017-01-24

    The Lorenz energy cycle is widely used to investigate atmospheres and climates on planets. However, the long-term temporal variations of such an energy cycle have not yet been explored. Here we use three independent meteorological data sets from the modern satellite era, to examine the temporal characteristics of the Lorenz energy cycle of Earth's global atmosphere in response to climate change. The total mechanical energy of the global atmosphere basically remains constant with time, but the global-average eddy energies show significant positive trends. The spatial investigations suggest that these positive trends are concentrated in the Southern Hemisphere. Significant positive trends are also found in the conversion, generation and dissipation rates of energies. The positive trends in the dissipation rates of kinetic energies suggest that the efficiency of the global atmosphere as a heat engine increased during the modern satellite era.

  12. Neotropical vegetation responses to Younger Dryas climates as analogs for future climate change scenarios and lessons for conservation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rull, V.; Vegas-Vilarrúbia, T.; Montoya, E.

    2015-05-01

    The Younger Dryas (YD) climatic reversal (12.86-11.65 cal ky BP), especially the warming initiated at ∼12.6 cal ky BP, and the associated vegetation changes have been proposed as past analogs to forecast the potential vegetation responses to future global warming. In this paper, we applied this model to highland and midland Neotropical localities. We used pollen analysis of lake sediments to record vegetation responses to YD climatic changes, which are reconstructed from independent paleoclimatic proxies such as the Mg/Ca ratio on foraminiferal tests and Equilibrium Line Altitude (ELA) for paleotemperature, and grayscale density and Titanium content for paleoprecipitation. Paleoclimatic reconstructions at both highlands and midlands showed a clear YD signal with a conspicuous warming extending into the early Holocene. A small percentage of taxa resulted to be sensitive to these YD climate changes. Response lags were negligible at the resolution of the study. However, changes in the sensitive taxa were relevant enough to determine changes in biodiversity and taxonomic composition. Highland vegetation experienced mainly intra-community reorganizations, whereas midland vegetation underwent major changes leading to community substitutions. This was explained in terms of threshold-crossing non-linear responses in which the coupling of climatic and other forcings (fire) was proposed as the main driving mechanism. Paleoecology provides meaningful insights on the responses of highland and midland Neotropical vegetation to the YD climatic reversal. Biotic responses at both individual (species) and collective (assemblage) levels showed patterns and processes of vegetation change useful to understand its ecological dynamics, as well as the mechanisms and external drivers involved. The use of paleoecological methods to document the biotic responses to the YD climate shifts can be useful to help forecasting the potential consequences of future global warming. Due to its quasi

  13. Ecological and methodological drivers of species' distribution and phenology responses to climate change.

    PubMed

    Brown, Christopher J; O'Connor, Mary I; Poloczanska, Elvira S; Schoeman, David S; Buckley, Lauren B; Burrows, Michael T; Duarte, Carlos M; Halpern, Benjamin S; Pandolfi, John M; Parmesan, Camille; Richardson, Anthony J

    2016-04-01

    Climate change is shifting species' distribution and phenology. Ecological traits, such as mobility or reproductive mode, explain variation in observed rates of shift for some taxa. However, estimates of relationships between traits and climate responses could be influenced by how responses are measured. We compiled a global data set of 651 published marine species' responses to climate change, from 47 papers on distribution shifts and 32 papers on phenology change. We assessed the relative importance of two classes of predictors of the rate of change, ecological traits of the responding taxa and methodological approaches for quantifying biological responses. Methodological differences explained 22% of the variation in range shifts, more than the 7.8% of the variation explained by ecological traits. For phenology change, methodological approaches accounted for 4% of the variation in measurements, whereas 8% of the variation was explained by ecological traits. Our ability to predict responses from traits was hindered by poor representation of species from the tropics, where temperature isotherms are moving most rapidly. Thus, the mean rate of distribution change may be underestimated by this and other global syntheses. Our analyses indicate that methodological approaches should be explicitly considered when designing, analysing and comparing results among studies. To improve climate impact studies, we recommend that (1) reanalyses of existing time series state how the existing data sets may limit the inferences about possible climate responses; (2) qualitative comparisons of species' responses across different studies be limited to studies with similar methodological approaches; (3) meta-analyses of climate responses include methodological attributes as covariates; and (4) that new time series be designed to include the detection of early warnings of change or ecologically relevant change. Greater consideration of methodological attributes will improve the accuracy

  14. Holocene Substrate Influences on Plant and Fire Response to Climate Change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Briles, C.; Whitlock, C. L.

    2011-12-01

    The role of substrates in facilitating plant responses to climate change in the past has received little attention. Ecological studies, documenting the relative role of fertile and infertile substrates in mediating the effects of climate change, lack the temporal information that paleoecological lake studies provide on how plants have responded under equal, larger and more rapid past climate events than today. In this paper, pollen and macroscopic charcoal preserved in the sediments of eight lakes surrounded by infertile ultramafic soils and more fertile soils in the Klamath Mountains of northern California were analyzed. Comparison of late-Quaternary paleoecological sites suggests that infertile and fertile substrates supported distinctly different plant communities. Trees and shrubs on infertile substrates were less responsive to climate change than those on fertile substrates, with the only major compositional change occurring at the glacial/interglacial transition (~11.5ka), when temperature rose 5oC. Trees and shrubs on fertile substrates were more responsive to climate changes, and tracked climate by moving along elevational gradients, including during more recent climate events such as the Little Ice Age and Medieval Climate Anomaly. Fire regimes were similar until 4ka on both substrate types. After 4ka, understory fuels on infertile substrates became sparse and fire activity decreased, while on fertile substrates forests became increasingly denser and fire activity increased. The complacency of plant communities on infertile sites to climate change contrasts with the individualistic and rapid adjustments of species on fertile sites. The findings differ from observations on shorter time scales that show the most change in herb cover and richness in the last 60 years on infertile substrates. Thus, the paleorecord provides unique long-term ecological data necessary to evaluate the response of plants to future climate change under different levels of soil

  15. Recent ecological responses to climate change support predictions of high extinction risk.

    PubMed

    Maclean, Ilya M D; Wilson, Robert J

    2011-07-26

    Predicted effects of climate change include high extinction risk for many species, but confidence in these predictions is undermined by a perceived lack of empirical support. Many studies have now documented ecological responses to recent climate change, providing the opportunity to test whether the magnitude and nature of recent responses match predictions. Here, we perform a global and multitaxon metaanalysis to show that empirical evidence for the realized effects of climate change supports predictions of future extinction risk. We use International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List criteria as a common scale to estimate extinction risks from a wide range of climate impacts, ecological responses, and methods of analysis, and we compare predictions with observations. Mean extinction probability across studies making predictions of the future effects of climate change was 7% by 2100 compared with 15% based on observed responses. After taking account of possible bias in the type of climate change impact analyzed and the parts of the world and taxa studied, there was less discrepancy between the two approaches: predictions suggested a mean extinction probability of 10% across taxa and regions, whereas empirical evidence gave a mean probability of 14%. As well as mean overall extinction probability, observations also supported predictions in terms of variability in extinction risk and the relative risk associated with broad taxonomic groups and geographic regions. These results suggest that predictions are robust to methodological assumptions and provide strong empirical support for the assertion that anthropogenic climate change is now a major threat to global biodiversity.

  16. N cycling in SPRUCE (Spruce Peatlands Response Under Climatic and Environmental Changes)

    EPA Science Inventory

    Peatlands located in boreal regions make up a third of global wetland area and are expected to have the highest temperature increases in response to climate change. As climate warms, we expect peat decomposition may accelerate, altering the cycling of nitrogen. Alterations in th...

  17. Shifts in the potential distribution of Sky Island plant communities in response to climate change

    Treesearch

    John A. Kupfer; Jeff Balmat; Jacqueline L. Smith

    2005-01-01

    To examine potential responses of sky island ecosystem pattern to projected climate changes, we used topographic and climatic data to develop a predictive model of plant community distribution in Saguaro National Park East, AZ. Increasing temperatures led to an upslope movement of communities and increased the area of desert scrub at the expense of montane conifer...

  18. Predicting Climate Change using Response Theory: Global Averages and Spatial Patterns

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lucarini, Valerio; Lunkeit, Frank; Ragone, Francesco

    2016-04-01

    The provision of accurate methods for predicting the climate response to anthropogenic and natural forcings is a key contemporary scientific challenge. Using a simplified and efficient open-source climate model featuring O(105) degrees of freedom, we show how it is possible to approach such a problem using nonequilibrium statistical mechanics. Using the theoretical framework of the pullback attractor and the tools of response theory we propose a simple yet efficient method for predicting - at any lead time and in an ensemble sense - the change in climate properties resulting from increase in the concentration of CO2 using test perturbation model runs. We assess strengths and limitations of the response theory in predicting the changes in the globally averaged values of surface temperature and of the yearly total precipitation, as well as their spatial patterns. We also show how it is possible to define accurately concepts like the the inertia of the climate system or to predict when climate change is detectable given a scenario of forcing. Our analysis can be extended for dealing with more complex portfolios of forcings and can be adapted to treat, in principle, any climate observable. Our conclusion is that climate change is indeed a problem that can be effectively seen through a statistical mechanical lens, and that there is great potential for optimizing the current coordinated modelling exercises run for the preparation of the subsequent reports of the Intergovernmental Panel for Climate Change.

  19. Contrasting response of South Greenland glaciers to recent climatic change

    SciTech Connect

    Warren, C.R.; Glasser, N.F. )

    1992-05-01

    A unique geographical configuration of glaciers exists in the Narsarsuaq district of South Greenland. Two large outlet glaciers divide into seven distributaries, such that each glacier system has land-terminating, tidewater-calving, and fresh-water-calving termini. Despite a similar climatic regime, these seven glaciers have exhibited strongly contrasting terminal behavior in historical time, as shown by historical records, aerial photographs, and fieldwork in 1989. The behavior of the calving glaciers cannot be accounted for with reference solely to climatic parameters. The combination of iceberg calving dynamics and topographic control has partially decoupled them from climatic forcing such that their oscillations relate more closely to glaciodynamic than glacioclimatic factors.

  20. Inbreeding and experience affect response to climate change by endangered woodpeckers.

    PubMed

    Schiegg, Karin; Pasinelli, Gilberto; Walters, Jeffrey R; Daniels, Susan J

    2002-06-07

    In recent decades, female red-cockaded woodpeckers (Picoides borealis) have laid eggs increasingly earlier in response to a changing climate, as has been observed in several other bird species breeding at north temperate latitudes. Within each year, females that lay earlier are more productive than females that lay later. However, inexperienced females, experienced females who change mates and inbred birds have not adjusted to the changing climate by laying earlier, and have suffered reproductive costs as a result. Failure to respond to global climate change may be a further example of the reduced ability of inbred animals to respond to environmental challenges.

  1. Herders' perceptions of and responses to climate change in northern Pakistan.

    PubMed

    Joshi, S; Jasra, W A; Ismail, M; Shrestha, R M; Yi, S L; Wu, N

    2013-09-01

    Migratory pastoralism is an adaptation to a harsh and unstable environment, and pastoral herders have traditionally adapted to environmental and climatic change by building on their in-depth knowledge of this environment. In the Hindu Kush Himalayan region, and particularly in the arid and semiarid areas of northern Pakistan, pastoralism, the main livelihood, is vulnerable to climate change. Little detailed information is available about climate trends and impacts in remote mountain regions; herders' perceptions of climate change can provide the information needed by policy makers to address problems and make decisions on adaptive strategies in high pastoral areas. A survey was conducted in Gilgit-Baltistan province of Pakistan to assess herders' perceptions of, and adaptation strategies to climate change. Herders' perceptions were gathered in individual interviews and focus group discussions. The herders perceived a change in climate over the past 10-15 years with longer and more intense droughts in summer, more frequent and heavier snowfall in winter, and prolonged summers and relatively shorter winters. These perceptions were validated by published scientific evidence. The herders considered that the change in climate had directly impacted pastures and then livestock by changing vegetation composition and reducing forage yield. They had adopted some adaptive strategies in response to the change such as altering the migration pattern and diversifying livelihoods. The findings show that the herder communities have practical lessons and indigenous knowledge related to rangeland management and adaptation to climate change that should be shared with the scientific community and integrated into development planning.

  2. Key ecological responses to nitrogen are altered by climate change

    EPA Science Inventory

    Here we review the effects of nitrogen and climate (e.g. temperature and precipitation) on four aspects of ecosystem structure and function including hydrologic-coupled nitrogen cycling, carbon cycling, acidification and biodiversity.

  3. Key ecological responses to nitrogen are altered by climate change

    EPA Science Inventory

    Here we review the effects of nitrogen and climate (e.g. temperature and precipitation) on four aspects of ecosystem structure and function including hydrologic-coupled nitrogen cycling, carbon cycling, acidification and biodiversity.

  4. Threshold effects in the vegetation response to Holocene climate changes in central Asia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhao, Y.

    2015-12-01

    Understanding the response of ecosystems to past climate is critical for evaluating the impacts of future climate changes. A relatively abrupt vegetation shift in response to the late Holocene gradual climate changes has been well documented for the Sahara-Sahel ecosystem. However, whether such threshold shift is of universal significance remains to be further addressed. Here, we examine the vegetation-climate relationships in central Asia based on four newly recovered Holocene pollen records and a synthesis on previously published pollen data. The results show that the orbital-induced gradual climate trend during the Holocene led to two major abrupt vegetation shifts, and that the timings of these shifts are highly dependent of the local rainfall conditions. Instead, the mid-Holocene vegetation remained rather stable despite of the changing climate. These new findings demonstrate generally significant threshold and truncation effects of climate changes on vegetation, as are strongly supported by surface pollen data and LPJ-GUESS modeling. The results also imply that using pollen data to reconstruct past climate changes is not always straightforward. Our findings have important implication for understanding the potential effects of global warming on dryland ecosystem change.

  5. Climate variability slows evolutionary responses of Colias butterflies to recent climate change.

    PubMed

    Kingsolver, Joel G; Buckley, Lauren B

    2015-03-07

    How does recent climate warming and climate variability alter fitness, phenotypic selection and evolution in natural populations? We combine biophysical, demographic and evolutionary models with recent climate data to address this question for the subalpine and alpine butterfly, Colias meadii, in the southern Rocky Mountains. We focus on predicting patterns of selection and evolution for a key thermoregulatory trait, melanin (solar absorptivity) on the posterior ventral hindwings, which affects patterns of body temperature, flight activity, adult and egg survival, and reproductive success in Colias. Both mean annual summer temperatures and thermal variability within summers have increased during the past 60 years at subalpine and alpine sites. At the subalpine site, predicted directional selection on wing absorptivity has shifted from generally positive (favouring increased wing melanin) to generally negative during the past 60 years, but there is substantial variation among years in the predicted magnitude and direction of selection and the optimal absorptivity. The predicted magnitude of directional selection at the alpine site declined during the past 60 years and varies substantially among years, but selection has generally been positive at this site. Predicted evolutionary responses to mean climate warming at the subalpine site since 1980 is small, because of the variability in selection and asymmetry of the fitness function. At both sites, the predicted effects of adaptive evolution on mean population fitness are much smaller than the fluctuations in mean fitness due to climate variability among years. Our analyses suggest that variation in climate within and among years may strongly limit evolutionary responses of ectotherms to mean climate warming in these habitats.

  6. Climate variability slows evolutionary responses of Colias butterflies to recent climate change

    PubMed Central

    Kingsolver, Joel G.; Buckley, Lauren B.

    2015-01-01

    How does recent climate warming and climate variability alter fitness, phenotypic selection and evolution in natural populations? We combine biophysical, demographic and evolutionary models with recent climate data to address this question for the subalpine and alpine butterfly, Colias meadii, in the southern Rocky Mountains. We focus on predicting patterns of selection and evolution for a key thermoregulatory trait, melanin (solar absorptivity) on the posterior ventral hindwings, which affects patterns of body temperature, flight activity, adult and egg survival, and reproductive success in Colias. Both mean annual summer temperatures and thermal variability within summers have increased during the past 60 years at subalpine and alpine sites. At the subalpine site, predicted directional selection on wing absorptivity has shifted from generally positive (favouring increased wing melanin) to generally negative during the past 60 years, but there is substantial variation among years in the predicted magnitude and direction of selection and the optimal absorptivity. The predicted magnitude of directional selection at the alpine site declined during the past 60 years and varies substantially among years, but selection has generally been positive at this site. Predicted evolutionary responses to mean climate warming at the subalpine site since 1980 is small, because of the variability in selection and asymmetry of the fitness function. At both sites, the predicted effects of adaptive evolution on mean population fitness are much smaller than the fluctuations in mean fitness due to climate variability among years. Our analyses suggest that variation in climate within and among years may strongly limit evolutionary responses of ectotherms to mean climate warming in these habitats. PMID:25631995

  7. Forest Owners' Response to Climate Change: University Education Trumps Value Profile.

    PubMed

    Blennow, Kristina; Persson, Johannes; Persson, Erik; Hanewinkel, Marc

    2016-01-01

    Do forest owners' levels of education or value profiles explain their responses to climate change? The cultural cognition thesis (CCT) has cast serious doubt on the familiar and often criticized "knowledge deficit" model, which says that laypeople are less concerned about climate change because they lack scientific knowledge. Advocates of CCT maintain that citizens with the highest degrees of scientific literacy and numeracy are not the most concerned about climate change. Rather, this is the group in which cultural polarization is greatest, and thus individuals with more limited scientific literacy and numeracy are more concerned about climate change under certain circumstances than those with higher scientific literacy and numeracy. The CCT predicts that cultural and other values will trump the positive effects of education on some forest owners' attitudes to climate change. Here, using survey data collected in 2010 from 766 private forest owners in Sweden and Germany, we provide the first evidence that perceptions of climate change risk are uncorrelated with, or sometimes positively correlated with, education level and can be explained without reference to cultural or other values. We conclude that the recent claim that advanced scientific literacy and numeracy polarizes perceptions of climate change risk is unsupported by the forest owner data. In neither of the two countries was university education found to reduce the perception of risk from climate change. Indeed in most cases university education increased the perception of risk. Even more importantly, the effect of university education was not dependent on the individuals' value profile.

  8. Forest Owners' Response to Climate Change: University Education Trumps Value Profile

    PubMed Central

    Persson, Erik; Hanewinkel, Marc

    2016-01-01

    Do forest owners’ levels of education or value profiles explain their responses to climate change? The cultural cognition thesis (CCT) has cast serious doubt on the familiar and often criticized "knowledge deficit" model, which says that laypeople are less concerned about climate change because they lack scientific knowledge. Advocates of CCT maintain that citizens with the highest degrees of scientific literacy and numeracy are not the most concerned about climate change. Rather, this is the group in which cultural polarization is greatest, and thus individuals with more limited scientific literacy and numeracy are more concerned about climate change under certain circumstances than those with higher scientific literacy and numeracy. The CCT predicts that cultural and other values will trump the positive effects of education on some forest owners' attitudes to climate change. Here, using survey data collected in 2010 from 766 private forest owners in Sweden and Germany, we provide the first evidence that perceptions of climate change risk are uncorrelated with, or sometimes positively correlated with, education level and can be explained without reference to cultural or other values. We conclude that the recent claim that advanced scientific literacy and numeracy polarizes perceptions of climate change risk is unsupported by the forest owner data. In neither of the two countries was university education found to reduce the perception of risk from climate change. Indeed in most cases university education increased the perception of risk. Even more importantly, the effect of university education was not dependent on the individuals' value profile. PMID:27223473

  9. Time-lag effects of global vegetation responses to climate change.

    PubMed

    Wu, Donghai; Zhao, Xiang; Liang, Shunlin; Zhou, Tao; Huang, Kaicheng; Tang, Bijian; Zhao, Wenqian

    2015-09-01

    Climate conditions significantly affect vegetation growth in terrestrial ecosystems. Due to the spatial heterogeneity of ecosystems, the vegetation responses to climate vary considerably with the diverse spatial patterns and the time-lag effects, which are the most important mechanism of climate-vegetation interactive effects. Extensive studies focused on large-scale vegetation-climate interactions use the simultaneous meteorological and vegetation indicators to develop models; however, the time-lag effects are less considered, which tends to increase uncertainty. In this study, we aim to quantitatively determine the time-lag effects of global vegetation responses to different climatic factors using the GIMMS3g NDVI time series and the CRU temperature, precipitation, and solar radiation datasets. First, this study analyzed the time-lag effects of global vegetation responses to different climatic factors. Then, a multiple linear regression model and partial correlation model were established to statistically analyze the roles of different climatic factors on vegetation responses, from which the primary climate-driving factors for different vegetation types were determined. The results showed that (i) both the time-lag effects of the vegetation responses and the major climate-driving factors that significantly affect vegetation growth varied significantly at the global scale, which was related to the diverse vegetation and climate characteristics; (ii) regarding the time-lag effects, the climatic factors explained 64% variation of the global vegetation growth, which was 11% relatively higher than the model ignoring the time-lag effects; (iii) for the area with a significant change trend (for the period 1982-2008) in the global GIMMS3g NDVI (P < 0.05), the primary driving factor was temperature; and (iv) at the regional scale, the variation in vegetation growth was also related to human activities and natural disturbances. Considering the time-lag effects is quite

  10. Dealing with uncertainty: Response-resilient climate change mitigation polices for long-lived and short-lived climate pollutants

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Millar, R.; Boneham, J.; Hepburn, C.; Allen, M. R.

    2015-12-01

    Climate change solutions are subject to many inherent uncertainties. One of the most important is the uncertainty over the magnitude of the physical response of the climate system to external forcing. The risk of extremely large responses to forcing, so called "fat-tail" outcomes, cannot be ruled out from the latest science and offer profound challenges when creating policies that aim to meet a specific target of global temperature change. This study offers examples of how mitigation policies can be made resilient to this uncertainty in the physical climate response via indexing policies against an attributable anthropogenic warming index (the magnitude of the observed global mean warming that is can be traced to human activities), the AWI, instead of against time directly. We show that indexing policy measures that influence the total stock of carbon in the atmosphere (such as the fraction of extracted carbon sequestered) against the AWI can largely eliminate the risk of missing the specified warming goal due to unexpectedly large climate responses as well as the risk of costly over-mitigation if the physical response turned out to be lower than expected. We offer further examples of how this methodology can be expanded to include short-lived climate pollutants as well as long-lived carbon dioxide. Indexing policies against the AWI can have important consequences for the actions of governments acting to design national climate mitigation policies as well as private sector investors looking to incentivise the transition to a climate-stable economy. We conclude with some thoughts on how these indexes can help focus attention on the long-term perspective that is consistent with the conclusions of the latest climate science on what is required to ultimately stabilise the global climate system.

  11. Exploring the southern ocean response to climate change

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Martinson, Douglas G.; Rind, David; Parkinson, Claire

    1993-01-01

    The purpose of this project was to couple a regional (Southern Ocean) ocean/sea ice model to the existing Goddard Institute for Space Science (GISS) atmospheric general circulation model (GCM). This modification recognizes: the relative isolation of the Southern Ocean; the need to account, prognostically, for the significant air/sea/ice interaction through all involved components; and the advantage of translating the atmospheric lower boundary (typically the rapidly changing ocean surface) to a level that is consistent with the physical response times governing the system evolution (that is, to the base of the fast responding ocean surface layer). The deeper ocean beneath this layer varies on time scales several orders of magnitude slower than the atmosphere and surface ocean, and therefore the boundary between the upper and deep ocean represents a more reasonable fixed boundary condition.

  12. Determining the response of African biota to climate change: using the past to model the future

    PubMed Central

    Willis, K. J.; Bennett, K. D.; Burrough, S. L.; Macias-Fauria, M.; Tovar, C.

    2013-01-01

    Prediction of biotic responses to future climate change in tropical Africa tends to be based on two modelling approaches: bioclimatic species envelope models and dynamic vegetation models. Another complementary but underused approach is to examine biotic responses to similar climatic changes in the past as evidenced in fossil and historical records. This paper reviews these records and highlights the information that they provide in terms of understanding the local- and regional-scale responses of African vegetation to future climate change. A key point that emerges is that a move to warmer and wetter conditions in the past resulted in a large increase in biomass and a range distribution of woody plants up to 400–500 km north of its present location, the so-called greening of the Sahara. By contrast, a transition to warmer and drier conditions resulted in a reduction in woody vegetation in many regions and an increase in grass/savanna-dominated landscapes. The rapid rate of climate warming coming into the current interglacial resulted in a dramatic increase in community turnover, but there is little evidence for widespread extinctions. However, huge variation in biotic response in both space and time is apparent with, in some cases, totally different responses to the same climatic driver. This highlights the importance of local features such as soils, topography and also internal biotic factors in determining responses and resilience of the African biota to climate change, information that is difficult to obtain from modelling but is abundant in palaeoecological records. PMID:23878343

  13. A crucial step toward realism: responses to climate change from an evolving metacommunity perspective

    PubMed Central

    Urban, Mark C; De Meester, Luc; Vellend, Mark; Stoks, Robby; Vanoverbeke, Joost

    2012-01-01

    We need to understand joint ecological and evolutionary responses to climate change to predict future threats to biological diversity. The ‘evolving metacommunity’ framework emphasizes that interactions between ecological and evolutionary mechanisms at both local and regional scales will drive community dynamics during climate change. Theory suggests that ecological and evolutionary dynamics often interact to produce outcomes different from those predicted based on either mechanism alone. We highlight two of these dynamics: (i) species interactions prevent adaptation of nonresident species to new niches and (ii) resident species adapt to changing climates and thereby prevent colonization by nonresident species. The rate of environmental change, level of genetic variation, source-sink structure, and dispersal rates mediate between these potential outcomes. Future models should evaluate multiple species, species interactions other than competition, and multiple traits. Future experiments should manipulate factors such as genetic variation and dispersal to determine their joint effects on responses to climate change. Currently, we know much more about how climates will change across the globe than about how species will respond to these changes despite the profound effects these changes will have on global biological diversity. Integrating evolving metacommunity perspectives into climate change biology should produce more accurate predictions about future changes to species distributions and extinction threats. PMID:25568038

  14. A crucial step toward realism: responses to climate change from an evolving metacommunity perspective.

    PubMed

    Urban, Mark C; De Meester, Luc; Vellend, Mark; Stoks, Robby; Vanoverbeke, Joost

    2012-02-01

    We need to understand joint ecological and evolutionary responses to climate change to predict future threats to biological diversity. The 'evolving metacommunity' framework emphasizes that interactions between ecological and evolutionary mechanisms at both local and regional scales will drive community dynamics during climate change. Theory suggests that ecological and evolutionary dynamics often interact to produce outcomes different from those predicted based on either mechanism alone. We highlight two of these dynamics: (i) species interactions prevent adaptation of nonresident species to new niches and (ii) resident species adapt to changing climates and thereby prevent colonization by nonresident species. The rate of environmental change, level of genetic variation, source-sink structure, and dispersal rates mediate between these potential outcomes. Future models should evaluate multiple species, species interactions other than competition, and multiple traits. Future experiments should manipulate factors such as genetic variation and dispersal to determine their joint effects on responses to climate change. Currently, we know much more about how climates will change across the globe than about how species will respond to these changes despite the profound effects these changes will have on global biological diversity. Integrating evolving metacommunity perspectives into climate change biology should produce more accurate predictions about future changes to species distributions and extinction threats.

  15. Modeling the response of plants and ecosystems to elevated CO sub 2 and climate change

    SciTech Connect

    Reynolds, J.F.; Hilbert, D.W.; Chen, Jia-lin; Harley, P.C.; Kemp, P.R.; Leadley, P.W.

    1992-03-01

    While the exact effects of elevated CO{sub 2} on global climate are unknown, there is a growing consensus among climate modelers that global temperature and precipitation will increase, but that these changes will be non-uniform over the Earth's surface. In addition to these potential climatic changes, CO{sub 2} also directly affects plants via photosynthesis, respiration, and stomatal closure. Global climate change, in concert with these direct effects of CO{sub 2} on plants, could have a significant impact on both natural and agricultural ecosystems. Society's ability to prepare for, and respond to, such changes depends largely on the ability of climate and ecosystem researchers to provide predictions of regional level ecosystem responses with sufficient confidence and adequate lead time.

  16. Modeling the response of plants and ecosystems to elevated CO{sub 2} and climate change

    SciTech Connect

    Reynolds, J.F.; Hilbert, D.W.; Chen, Jia-lin; Harley, P.C.; Kemp, P.R.; Leadley, P.W.

    1992-03-01

    While the exact effects of elevated CO{sub 2} on global climate are unknown, there is a growing consensus among climate modelers that global temperature and precipitation will increase, but that these changes will be non-uniform over the Earth`s surface. In addition to these potential climatic changes, CO{sub 2} also directly affects plants via photosynthesis, respiration, and stomatal closure. Global climate change, in concert with these direct effects of CO{sub 2} on plants, could have a significant impact on both natural and agricultural ecosystems. Society`s ability to prepare for, and respond to, such changes depends largely on the ability of climate and ecosystem researchers to provide predictions of regional level ecosystem responses with sufficient confidence and adequate lead time.

  17. Asynchronous demographic responses to Pleistocene climate change in Eastern Nearctic vertebrates.

    PubMed

    Burbrink, Frank T; Chan, Yvonne L; Myers, Edward A; Ruane, Sara; Smith, Brian Tilston; Hickerson, Michael J

    2016-12-01

    Pleistocene climatic cycles altered species distributions in the Eastern Nearctic of North America, yet the degree of congruent demographic response to the Pleistocene among codistributed taxa remains unknown. We use a hierarchical approximate Bayesian computational approach to test if population sizes across lineages of snakes, lizards, turtles, mammals, birds, salamanders and frogs in this region expanded synchronously to Late Pleistocene climate changes. Expansion occurred in 75% of 74 lineages, and of these, population size trajectories across the community were partially synchronous, with coexpansion found in at least 50% of lineages in each taxonomic group. For those taxa expanding outside of these synchronous pulses, factors related to when they entered the community, ecological thresholds or biotic interactions likely condition their timing of response to Pleistocene climate change. Unified timing of population size change across communities in response to Pleistocene climate cycles is likely rare in North America. © 2016 John Wiley & Sons Ltd/CNRS.

  18. Quantifying thermal extremes and biological variation to predict evolutionary responses to changing climate.

    PubMed

    Kingsolver, Joel G; Buckley, Lauren B

    2017-06-19

    Central ideas from thermal biology, including thermal performance curves and tolerances, have been widely used to evaluate how changes in environmental means and variances generate changes in fitness, selection and microevolution in response to climate change. We summarize the opportunities and challenges for extending this approach to understanding the consequences of extreme climatic events. Using statistical tools from extreme value theory, we show how distributions of thermal extremes vary with latitude, time scale and climate change. Second, we review how performance curves and tolerances have been used to predict the fitness and evolutionary responses to climate change and climate gradients. Performance curves and tolerances change with prior thermal history and with time scale, complicating their use for predicting responses to thermal extremes. Third, we describe several recent case studies showing how infrequent extreme events can have outsized effects on the evolution of performance curves and heat tolerance. A key issue is whether thermal extremes affect reproduction or survival, and how these combine to determine overall fitness. We argue that a greater focus on tails-in the distribution of environmental extremes, and in the upper ends of performance curves-is needed to understand the consequences of extreme events.This article is part of the themed issue 'Behavioural, ecological and evolutionary responses to extreme climatic events'. © 2017 The Author(s).

  19. The influence of cognitive processes on rural landholder responses to climate change.

    PubMed

    Rogers, Maureen; Curtis, Allan; Mazur, Nicki

    2012-11-30

    Global climate change modelling has identified south-east Australia as a 'hot spot' for more frequent climatic extremes. Rural landholders may be vulnerable to the risks climate change presents. Australia's rural landholders are considered highly adaptable, with a history of responding to climatic uncertainty and variability. Yet it is possible that some of their adaptations will not be effective in reducing vulnerability, and may have downstream impacts. Rural landholder decision making is complex, and this is one of a limited number of papers examining rural landholder responses to climate change and the factors influencing their decisions. Data were gathered using semi-structured interviews and a mail survey of rural landholders in two districts. Established socio-psychological scales were employed to measure beliefs, values and attitudes that are expected to shape landholder behaviour. Most of the rural landholders surveyed were not climate change 'deniers' with 70% agreeing that the climate is changing and that human activity is a major influence. Climate change was nominated as an influence on six adaptive behaviours by 50% or more of survey respondents. However, there were no significant relationships between belief in climate change and adaptive actions. Personal values and worldviews were found to be the most frequent factors linked to adaptive behaviour. These findings illustrate the complex nature of rural landholder decision making: suggesting that many rural landholders do not need convincing of the existence of climate change; and that efforts to motivate rural landholders to respond to climate change risks should be based on sound knowledge of their values and worldviews.

  20. Predicting responses to climate change requires all life-history stages.

    PubMed

    Zeigler, Sara

    2013-01-01

    In Focus: Radchuk, V., Turlure, C. & Schtickzelle, N. (2013) Each life stage matters: the importance of assessing response to climate change over the complete life cycle in butterflies. Journal of Animal Ecology, 82, 275-285. Population-level responses to climate change depend on many factors, including unexpected interactions among life history attributes; however, few studies examine climate change impacts over complete life cycles of focal species. Radchuk, Turlure & Schtickzelle () used experimental and modelling approaches to predict population dynamics for the bog fritillary butterfly under warming scenarios. Although they found that warming improved fertility and survival of all stages with one exception, populations were predicted to decline because overwintering larvae, whose survival declined with warming, were disproportionately important contributors to population growth. This underscores the importance of considering all life history stages in analyses of climate change's effects on population dynamics.

  1. The health co-benefits of climate change policies: doctors have a responsibility to future generations.

    PubMed

    Roberts, Ian

    2009-06-01

    Mitigating climate change presents unrivalled opportunities for improving public health. The policies that need to be implemented to reduce greenhouse gas emissions will also bring about substantial reductions in heart disease, cancer, obesity, diabetes, road deaths and injuries, and air pollution. The health benefits arise because climate change policies necessarily impact on two of the most important determinants of health: human nutrition and human movement. Although the health co-benefits of climate change policies are increasingly recognised by health professionals they are not widely appreciated by those responsible for policy. Because the existence of important health co-benefits will dramatically reduce the cost to society of taking strong action to mitigate climate change, failure to appreciate their importance could have serious environmental consequences. Health professionals have an urgent responsibility to ensure that the health benefits of environmental policies are understood by the public and by policymakers.

  2. Cold truths: how winter drives responses of terrestrial organisms to climate change.

    PubMed

    Williams, Caroline M; Henry, Hugh A L; Sinclair, Brent J

    2015-02-01

    Winter is a key driver of individual performance, community composition, and ecological interactions in terrestrial habitats. Although climate change research tends to focus on performance in the growing season, climate change is also modifying winter conditions rapidly. Changes to winter temperatures, the variability of winter conditions, and winter snow cover can interact to induce cold injury, alter energy and water balance, advance or retard phenology, and modify community interactions. Species vary in their susceptibility to these winter drivers, hampering efforts to predict biological responses to climate change. Existing frameworks for predicting the impacts of climate change do not incorporate the complexity of organismal responses to winter. Here, we synthesise organismal responses to winter climate change, and use this synthesis to build a framework to predict exposure and sensitivity to negative impacts. This framework can be used to estimate the vulnerability of species to winter climate change. We describe the importance of relationships between winter conditions and performance during the growing season in determining fitness, and demonstrate how summer and winter processes are linked. Incorporating winter into current models will require concerted effort from theoreticians and empiricists, and the expansion of current growing-season studies to incorporate winter. © 2014 The Authors. Biological Reviews © 2014 Cambridge Philosophical Society.

  3. Phenotypic plasticity and adaptive evolution contribute to advancing flowering phenology in response to climate change

    PubMed Central

    Anderson, Jill T.; Inouye, David W.; McKinney, Amy M.; Colautti, Robert I.; Mitchell-Olds, Tom

    2012-01-01

    Anthropogenic climate change has already altered the timing of major life-history transitions, such as the initiation of reproduction. Both phenotypic plasticity and adaptive evolution can underlie rapid phenological shifts in response to climate change, but their relative contributions are poorly understood. Here, we combine a continuous 38 year field survey with quantitative genetic field experiments to assess adaptation in the context of climate change. We focused on Boechera stricta (Brassicaeae), a mustard native to the US Rocky Mountains. Flowering phenology advanced significantly from 1973 to 2011, and was strongly associated with warmer temperatures and earlier snowmelt dates. Strong directional selection favoured earlier flowering in contemporary environments (2010–2011). Climate change could drive this directional selection, and promote even earlier flowering as temperatures continue to increase. Our quantitative genetic analyses predict a response to selection of 0.2 to 0.5 days acceleration in flowering per generation, which could account for more than 20 per cent of the phenological change observed in the long-term dataset. However, the strength of directional selection and the predicted evolutionary response are likely much greater now than even 30 years ago because of rapidly changing climatic conditions. We predict that adaptation will likely be necessary for long-term in situ persistence in the context of climate change. PMID:22787021

  4. Phenotypic plasticity and adaptive evolution contribute to advancing flowering phenology in response to climate change.

    PubMed

    Anderson, Jill T; Inouye, David W; McKinney, Amy M; Colautti, Robert I; Mitchell-Olds, Tom

    2012-09-22

    Anthropogenic climate change has already altered the timing of major life-history transitions, such as the initiation of reproduction. Both phenotypic plasticity and adaptive evolution can underlie rapid phenological shifts in response to climate change, but their relative contributions are poorly understood. Here, we combine a continuous 38 year field survey with quantitative genetic field experiments to assess adaptation in the context of climate change. We focused on Boechera stricta (Brassicaeae), a mustard native to the US Rocky Mountains. Flowering phenology advanced significantly from 1973 to 2011, and was strongly associated with warmer temperatures and earlier snowmelt dates. Strong directional selection favoured earlier flowering in contemporary environments (2010-2011). Climate change could drive this directional selection, and promote even earlier flowering as temperatures continue to increase. Our quantitative genetic analyses predict a response to selection of 0.2 to 0.5 days acceleration in flowering per generation, which could account for more than 20 per cent of the phenological change observed in the long-term dataset. However, the strength of directional selection and the predicted evolutionary response are likely much greater now than even 30 years ago because of rapidly changing climatic conditions. We predict that adaptation will likely be necessary for long-term in situ persistence in the context of climate change.

  5. Watershed response and land energy feedbacks under climate change depend upon groundwater.

    SciTech Connect

    Maxwell, R M; Kollet, S J

    2008-06-10

    Human induced climate change will have a significant impact on the hydrologic cycle, creating changes in fresh water resources, land cover, and feedbacks that are difficult to characterize, which makes it an issue of global importance. Previous studies have not included subsurface storage in climate change simulations and feedbacks. A variably-saturated groundwater flow model with integrated overland flow and land surface model processes is used to examine the interplay between coupled water and energy processes under climate change conditions. A case study from the Southern Great Plains (SGP) USA, an important agricultural region that is susceptible to drought, is used as the basis for three scenarios simulations using a modified atmospheric forcing dataset to reflect predicted effects due to human-induced climate change. These scenarios include an increase in the atmospheric temperature and variations in rainfall amount and are compared to the present-day climate case. Changes in shallow soil saturation and groundwater levels are quantified as well as the corresponding energy fluxes at the land surface. Here we show that groundwater and subsurface lateral flow processes are critical in understanding hydrologic response and energy feedbacks to climate change and that certain regions are more susceptible to changes in temperature, while others to changes in precipitation. This groundwater control is critical for understanding recharge and drought processes, possible under future climate conditions.

  6. The transient response of land and ocean precipitation in changing climates

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mcinerney, D. J.; Moyer, E. J.

    2011-12-01

    Although much attention in climate modeling is focused on fine-scale regional predictions, we suggest that diagnostics based on near-global characteristics of climate models provide insight into the underlying physics that differentiates general circulation models (GCMs) and in understanding the robustness of climate forecasts in conditions of changing radiative forcing. We show that certain aspects of the response of precipitation in transient climates are robust across models, including models with very different convective parameterization schemes, suggesting that they reflect some fundamental aspect of the climate system. Climate models are in broad agreement that the hydrological cycle is enhanced in conditions of higher atmospheric CO2 concentration, i.e. that global precipitation increases with surface temperature, but recent studies have shown that in transient climates the change in precipitation per warming is suppressed relative to its equilibrium value (ΔP/ΔT<ΔPeq/ΔTeq). This suppression, which we term the "disequilibrium precipitation response", manifests within days to months of a change in radiative forcing and has been cited as important for impacts assessments. We show that the disequilibrium precipitation response occurs over the ocean but is not present over land (and so has minimal effect on human welfare). This distinction is robust across 12 of 13 climate models in the CMIP3 archive. These findings are consistent with the previously proposed mechanism for this effect: that ocean heat burial reduces transient warming at the ocean surface relative to the mid-troposphere, increasing atmospheric stability and thereby inhibiting convection. This lapse rate change appears to be a common feature of climate models, although the size of the disequilibrium precipitation effect varies between them. We show that the most common representation of the disequilibrium precipitation response in the literature can be reduced to a simple statement that

  7. Ecosystem response to climatic change: the importance of the cold season.

    PubMed

    Bokhorst, Stef; Bjerke, Jarle W; Tømmervik, Hans; Preece, Catherine; Phoenix, Gareth K

    2012-01-01

    Winter climate and snow cover are the important drivers of plant community development in polar regions. However, the impacts of changing winter climate and associated changes in snow regime have received much less attention than changes during summer. Here, we synthesize the results from studies on the impacts of extreme winter weather events on polar heathland and lichen communities. Dwarf shrubs, mosses and soil arthropods were negatively impacted by extreme warming events while lichens showed variable responses to changes in extreme winter weather events. Snow mould formation underneath the snow may contribute to spatial heterogeneity in plant growth, arthropod communities and carbon cycling. Winter snow cover and depth will drive the reported impacts of winter climate change and add to spatial patterns in vegetation heterogeneity. The challenges ahead lie in obtaining better predictions on the snow patterns across the landscape and how these will be altered due to winter climate change.

  8. Health-sector responses to address the impacts of climate change in Nepal.

    PubMed

    Dhimal, Meghnath; Dhimal, Mandira Lamichhane; Pote-Shrestha, Raja Ram; Groneberg, David A; Kuch, Ulrich

    2017-09-01

    Nepal is highly vulnerable to global climate change, despite its negligible emission of global greenhouse gases. The vulnerable climate-sensitive sectors identified in Nepal's National Adaptation Programme of Action (NAPA) to Climate Change 2010 include agriculture, forestry, water, energy, public health, urbanization and infrastructure, and climate-induced disasters. In addition, analyses carried out as part of the NAPA process have indicated that the impacts of climate change in Nepal are not gender neutral. Vector-borne diseases, diarrhoeal diseases including cholera, malnutrition, cardiorespiratory diseases, psychological stress, and health effects and injuries related to extreme weather are major climate-sensitive health risks in the country. In recent years, research has been done in Nepal in order to understand the changing epidemiology of diseases and generate evidence for decision-making. Based on this evidence, the experience of programme managers, and regular surveillance data, the Government of Nepal has mainstreamed issues related to climate change in development plans, policies and programmes. In particular, the Government of Nepal has addressed climate-sensitive health risks. In addition to the NAPA report, several policy documents have been launched, including the Climate Change Policy 2011; the Nepal Health Sector Programme - Implementation Plan II (NHSP-IP 2) 2010-2015; the National Health Policy 2014; the National Health Sector Strategy 2015-2020 and its implementation plan (2016-2021); and the Health National Adaptation Plan (H-NAP): climate change and health strategy and action plan (2016-2020). However, the translation of these policies and plans of action into tangible action on the ground is still in its infancy in Nepal. Despite this, the health sector's response to addressing the impact of climate change in Nepal may be taken as a good example for other low- and middle-income countries.

  9. Body size and activity times mediate mammalian responses to climate change.

    PubMed

    McCain, Christy M; King, Sarah R B

    2014-06-01

    Model predictions of extinction risks from anthropogenic climate change are dire, but still overly simplistic. To reliably predict at-risk species we need to know which species are currently responding, which are not, and what traits are mediating the responses. For mammals, we have yet to identify overarching physiological, behavioral, or biogeographic traits determining species' responses to climate change, but they must exist. To date, 73 mammal species in North America and eight additional species worldwide have been assessed for responses to climate change, including local extirpations, range contractions and shifts, decreased abundance, phenological shifts, morphological or genetic changes. Only 52% of those species have responded as expected, 7% responded opposite to expectations, and the remaining 41% have not responded. Which mammals are and are not responding to climate change is mediated predominantly by body size and activity times (phylogenetic multivariate logistic regressions, P < 0.0001). Large mammals respond more, for example, an elk is 27 times more likely to respond to climate change than a shrew. Obligate diurnal and nocturnal mammals are more than twice as likely to respond as mammals with flexible activity times (P < 0.0001). Among the other traits examined, species with higher latitudinal and elevational ranges were more likely to respond to climate change in some analyses, whereas hibernation, heterothermy, burrowing, nesting, and study location did not influence responses. These results indicate that some mammal species can behaviorally escape climate change whereas others cannot, analogous to paleontology's climate sheltering hypothesis. Including body size and activity flexibility traits into future extinction risk forecasts should substantially improve their predictive utility for conservation and management. © 2014 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  10. Integrating human responses to climate change into conservation vulnerability assessments and adaptation planning.

    PubMed

    Maxwell, Sean L; Venter, Oscar; Jones, Kendall R; Watson, James E M

    2015-10-01

    The impact of climate change on biodiversity is now evident, with the direct impacts of changing temperature and rainfall patterns and increases in the magnitude and frequency of extreme events on species distribution, populations, and overall ecosystem function being increasingly publicized. Changes in the climate system are also affecting human communities, and a range of human responses across terrestrial and marine realms have been witnessed, including altered agricultural activities, shifting fishing efforts, and human migration. Failing to account for the human responses to climate change is likely to compromise climate-smart conservation efforts. Here, we use a well-established conservation planning framework to show how integrating human responses to climate change into both species- and site-based vulnerability assessments and adaptation plans is possible. By explicitly taking into account human responses, conservation practitioners will improve their evaluation of species and ecosystem vulnerability, and will be better able to deliver win-wins for human- and biodiversity-focused climate adaptation. © 2015 New York Academy of Sciences.

  11. Evolutionary and plastic responses of freshwater invertebrates to climate change: realized patterns and future potential

    PubMed Central

    Stoks, Robby; Geerts, Aurora N; De Meester, Luc

    2014-01-01

    We integrated the evidence for evolutionary and plastic trait changes in situ in response to climate change in freshwater invertebrates (aquatic insects and zooplankton). The synthesis on the trait changes in response to the expected reductions in hydroperiod and increases in salinity indicated little evidence for adaptive, plastic, and genetic trait changes and for local adaptation. With respect to responses to temperature, there are many studies on temporal trait changes in phenology and body size in the wild that are believed to be driven by temperature increases, but there is a general lack of rigorous demonstration whether these trait changes are genetically based, adaptive, and causally driven by climate change. Current proof for genetic trait changes under climate change in freshwater invertebrates stems from a limited set of common garden experiments replicated in time. Experimental thermal evolution experiments and common garden warming experiments associated with space-for-time substitutions along latitudinal gradients indicate that besides genetic changes, also phenotypic plasticity and evolution of plasticity are likely to contribute to the observed phenotypic changes under climate change in aquatic invertebrates. Apart from plastic and genetic thermal adjustments, also genetic photoperiod adjustments are widespread and may even dominate the observed phenological shifts. PMID:24454547

  12. Evolutionary and plastic responses of freshwater invertebrates to climate change: realized patterns and future potential.

    PubMed

    Stoks, Robby; Geerts, Aurora N; De Meester, Luc

    2014-01-01

    We integrated the evidence for evolutionary and plastic trait changes in situ in response to climate change in freshwater invertebrates (aquatic insects and zooplankton). The synthesis on the trait changes in response to the expected reductions in hydroperiod and increases in salinity indicated little evidence for adaptive, plastic, and genetic trait changes and for local adaptation. With respect to responses to temperature, there are many studies on temporal trait changes in phenology and body size in the wild that are believed to be driven by temperature increases, but there is a general lack of rigorous demonstration whether these trait changes are genetically based, adaptive, and causally driven by climate change. Current proof for genetic trait changes under climate change in freshwater invertebrates stems from a limited set of common garden experiments replicated in time. Experimental thermal evolution experiments and common garden warming experiments associated with space-for-time substitutions along latitudinal gradients indicate that besides genetic changes, also phenotypic plasticity and evolution of plasticity are likely to contribute to the observed phenotypic changes under climate change in aquatic invertebrates. Apart from plastic and genetic thermal adjustments, also genetic photoperiod adjustments are widespread and may even dominate the observed phenological shifts.

  13. Response of spatial vegetation distribution in China to climate changes since the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM).

    PubMed

    Wang, Siyang; Xu, Xiaoting; Shrestha, Nawal; Zimmermann, Niklaus E; Tang, Zhiyao; Wang, Zhiheng

    2017-01-01

    Analyzing how climate change affects vegetation distribution is one of the central issues of global change ecology as this has important implications for the carbon budget of terrestrial vegetation. Mapping vegetation distribution under historical climate scenarios is essential for understanding the response of vegetation distribution to future climatic changes. The reconstructions of palaeovegetation based on pollen data provide a useful method to understand the relationship between climate and vegetation distribution. However, this method is limited in time and space. Here, using species distribution model (SDM) approaches, we explored the climatic determinants of contemporary vegetation distribution and reconstructed the distribution of Chinese vegetation during the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM, 18,000 14C yr BP) and Middle-Holocene (MH, 6000 14C yr BP). The dynamics of vegetation distribution since the LGM reconstructed by SDMs were largely consistent with those based on pollen data, suggesting that the SDM approach is a useful tool for studying historical vegetation dynamics and its response to climate change across time and space. Comparison between the modeled contemporary potential natural vegetation distribution and the observed contemporary distribution suggests that temperate deciduous forests, subtropical evergreen broadleaf forests, temperate deciduous shrublands and temperate steppe have low range fillings and are strongly influenced by human activities. In general, the Tibetan Plateau, North and Northeast China, and the areas near the 30°N in Central and Southeast China appeared to have experienced the highest turnover in vegetation due to climate change from the LGM to the present.

  14. Response of spatial vegetation distribution in China to climate changes since the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM)

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Siyang; Xu, Xiaoting; Shrestha, Nawal; Zimmermann, Niklaus E.; Tang, Zhiyao; Wang, Zhiheng

    2017-01-01

    Analyzing how climate change affects vegetation distribution is one of the central issues of global change ecology as this has important implications for the carbon budget of terrestrial vegetation. Mapping vegetation distribution under historical climate scenarios is essential for understanding the response of vegetation distribution to future climatic changes. The reconstructions of palaeovegetation based on pollen data provide a useful method to understand the relationship between climate and vegetation distribution. However, this method is limited in time and space. Here, using species distribution model (SDM) approaches, we explored the climatic determinants of contemporary vegetation distribution and reconstructed the distribution of Chinese vegetation during the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM, 18,000 14C yr BP) and Middle-Holocene (MH, 6000 14C yr BP). The dynamics of vegetation distribution since the LGM reconstructed by SDMs were largely consistent with those based on pollen data, suggesting that the SDM approach is a useful tool for studying historical vegetation dynamics and its response to climate change across time and space. Comparison between the modeled contemporary potential natural vegetation distribution and the observed contemporary distribution suggests that temperate deciduous forests, subtropical evergreen broadleaf forests, temperate deciduous shrublands and temperate steppe have low range fillings and are strongly influenced by human activities. In general, the Tibetan Plateau, North and Northeast China, and the areas near the 30°N in Central and Southeast China appeared to have experienced the highest turnover in vegetation due to climate change from the LGM to the present. PMID:28426780

  15. Responses of terrestrial ecosystems' net primary productivity to future regional climate change in China.

    PubMed

    Zhao, Dongsheng; Wu, Shaohong; Yin, Yunhe

    2013-01-01

    The impact of regional climate change on net primary productivity (NPP) is an important aspect in the study of ecosystems' response to global climate change. China's ecosystems are very sensitive to climate change owing to the influence of the East Asian monsoon. The Lund-Potsdam-Jena Dynamic Global Vegetation Model for China (LPJ-CN), a global dynamical vegetation model developed for China's terrestrial ecosystems, was applied in this study to simulate the NPP changes affected by future climate change. As the LPJ-CN model is based on natural vegetation, the simulation in this study did not consider the influence of anthropogenic activities. Results suggest that future climate change would have adverse effects on natural ecosystems, with NPP tending to decrease in eastern China, particularly in the temperate and warm temperate regions. NPP would increase in western China, with a concentration in the Tibetan Plateau and the northwest arid regions. The increasing trend in NPP in western China and the decreasing trend in eastern China would be further enhanced by the warming climate. The spatial distribution of NPP, which declines from the southeast coast to the northwest inland, would have minimal variation under scenarios of climate change.

  16. Responses of Terrestrial Ecosystems’ Net Primary Productivity to Future Regional Climate Change in China

    PubMed Central

    Zhao, Dongsheng; Wu, Shaohong; Yin, Yunhe

    2013-01-01

    The impact of regional climate change on net primary productivity (NPP) is an important aspect in the study of ecosystems’ response to global climate change. China’s ecosystems are very sensitive to climate change owing to the influence of the East Asian monsoon. The Lund–Potsdam–Jena Dynamic Global Vegetation Model for China (LPJ-CN), a global dynamical vegetation model developed for China’s terrestrial ecosystems, was applied in this study to simulate the NPP changes affected by future climate change. As the LPJ-CN model is based on natural vegetation, the simulation in this study did not consider the influence of anthropogenic activities. Results suggest that future climate change would have adverse effects on natural ecosystems, with NPP tending to decrease in eastern China, particularly in the temperate and warm temperate regions. NPP would increase in western China, with a concentration in the Tibetan Plateau and the northwest arid regions. The increasing trend in NPP in western China and the decreasing trend in eastern China would be further enhanced by the warming climate. The spatial distribution of NPP, which declines from the southeast coast to the northwest inland, would have minimal variation under scenarios of climate change. PMID:23593325

  17. Evolution of plant–pollinator mutualisms in response to climate change

    PubMed Central

    Gilman, R Tucker; Fabina, Nicholas S; Abbott, Karen C; Rafferty, Nicole E

    2012-01-01

    Climate change has the potential to desynchronize the phenologies of interdependent species, with potentially catastrophic effects on mutualist populations. Phenologies can evolve, but the role of evolution in the response of mutualisms to climate change is poorly understood. We developed a model that explicitly considers both the evolution and the population dynamics of a plant–pollinator mutualism under climate change. How the populations evolve, and thus whether the populations and the mutualism persist, depends not only on the rate of climate change but also on the densities and phenologies of other species in the community. Abundant alternative mutualist partners with broad temporal distributions can make a mutualism more robust to climate change, while abundant alternative partners with narrow temporal distributions can make a mutualism less robust. How community composition and the rate of climate change affect the persistence of mutualisms is mediated by two-species Allee thresholds. Understanding these thresholds will help researchers to identify those mutualisms at highest risk owing to climate change. PMID:25568025

  18. Simulating the response of glacial ice-sheets to past abrupt climate changes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Banderas, Rubén; Álvarez-Solas, Jorge; Robinson, Alexander; Montoya, Marisa

    2016-04-01

    Dansgaard-Oeschger (D/O) events were recurrent glacial abrupt climatic transitions between cold and warm conditions over Greenland with an approximate characteristic time of a thousand years. The uncertainties among the available sea level reconstructions hinder our understanding of the interactions between climate and global ice volume. In addition, only limited highly-resolved and continuous sea level records exist. Thus, the millennial time-scale response of glacial ice-sheets to past abrupt climate changes is not well known. Here, we use a hybrid ice sheet-ice shelf model in order to investigate the response of glacial ice-sheets to the influence of millennial-scale climate variability. An ensemble of simulations is performed by forcing the model with a wide range of time-varying climatologies derived from proxy data and from some of the currently available climate model simulations. The assessment of the resulting suite of transient simulations will contribute to constrain the inadequacies of sea level reconstructions in terms of amplitude and timing and will help to understand the implications of glacial abrupt climate changes in past sea level variability. Furthermore, our experiments could be useful to elucidate the mechanisms that involve the interactions between climate and ice sheets on millennial time scales, including future climate change.

  19. Bunyaviruses and climate change.

    PubMed

    Elliott, R M

    2009-06-01

    It is generally accepted that the planet is undergoing climatic changes, and 'climate change' has become the scapegoat for many catastrophes, including infectious disease outbreaks, as acknowledged by Randolph and Ergonul, who state 'Climate change is the current ubiquitous explanation for increased incidence of infections of many sorts' (Future Virology 2008; 3: 303-306). However, as these authors argue, this is a highly simplistic view and, indeed, there is a complex network of factors that are responsible for disease emergence and re-emergence. In this short review, the role that climate change could play in the emergence of bunyavirus disease is considered, using a few selected examples.

  20. Projecting boreal bird responses to climate change: the signal exceeds the noise.

    PubMed

    Stralberg, D; Matsuoka, S M; Hamann, A; Bayne, E M; Sólymos, P; Schmiegelow, F K A; Wang, X; Cumming, S G; Song, S J

    2015-01-01

    For climate change projections to be useful, the magnitude of change must be understood relative to the magnitude of uncertainty in model predictions. We quantified the signal-to-noise ratio in projected distributional responses of boreal birds to climate change, and compared sources of uncertainty. Boosted regression tree models of abundance were generated for 80 boreal-breeding bird species using a comprehensive data set of standardized avian point counts (349,629 surveys at 122,202 unique locations) and 4-km climate, land use, and topographic data. For projected changes in abundance, we calculated signal-to-noise ratios and examined variance components related to choice of global climate model (GCM) and two sources of species distribution model (SDM) uncertainty: sampling error and variable selection. We also evaluated spatial, temporal, and interspecific variation in these sources of uncertainty. The mean signal-to-noise ratio across species increased over time to 2.87 by the end of the 21st century, with the signal greater than the noise for 88% of species. Across species, climate change represented the largest component (0.44) of variance in projected abundance change. Among sources of uncertainty evaluated, choice of GCM (mean variance component = 0.17) was most important for 66% of species, sampling error (mean= 0.12) for 29% of species, and variable selection (mean =0.05) for 5% of species. Increasing the number of GCMs from four to 19 had minor effects on these results. The range of projected changes and uncertainty characteristics across species differed markedly, reinforcing the individuality of species' responses to climate change and the challenges of one-size-fits-all approaches to climate change adaptation. We discuss the usefulness of different conservation approaches depending on the strength of the climate change signal relative to the noise, as well as the dominant source of prediction uncertainty.

  1. Analyzing the responses of species assemblages to climate change across the Great Basin, USA.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Henareh Khalyani, A.; Falkowski, M. J.; Crookston, N.; Yousef, F.

    2016-12-01

    The potential impacts of climate change on the future distribution of tree species in not well understood. Climate driven changes in tree species distribution could cause significant changes in realized species niches, potentially resulting in the loss of ecotonal species as well as the formation on novel assemblages of overlapping tree species. In an effort to gain a better understating of how the geographic distribution of tree species may respond to climate change, we model the potential future distribution of 50 different tree species across 70 million ha in the Great Basin, USA. This is achieved by leveraging a species realized niche model based on non-parametric analysis of species occurrences across climatic, topographic, and edaphic variables. Spatially explicit, high spatial resolution (30 m) climate variables (e.g., precipitation, and minimum, maximum, and mean temperature) and associated climate indices were generated on an annual basis between 1981-2010 by integrating climate station data with digital elevation data (Shuttle Radar Topographic Mission (SRTM) data) in a thin plate spline interpolation algorithm (ANUSPLIN). Bioclimate models of species niches in in the cotemporary period and three following 30 year periods were then generated by integrating the climate variables, soil data, and CMIP 5 general circulation model projections. Our results suggest that local scale contemporary variations in species realized niches across space are influenced by edaphic and topographic variables as well as climatic variables. The local variability in soil properties and topographic variability across space also affect the species responses to climate change through time and potential formation of species assemblages in future. The results presented here in will aid in the development of adaptive forest management techniques aimed at mitigating negative impacts of climate change on forest composition, structure, and function.

  2. Assessing insect responses to climate change: What are we testing for? Where should we be heading?

    PubMed

    Andrew, Nigel R; Hill, Sarah J; Binns, Matthew; Bahar, Md Habibullah; Ridley, Emma V; Jung, Myung-Pyo; Fyfe, Chris; Yates, Michelle; Khusro, Mohammad

    2013-01-01

    To understand how researchers are tackling globally important issues, it is crucial to identify whether current research is comprehensive enough to make substantive predictions about general responses. We examined how research on climate change affecting insects is being assessed, what factors are being tested and the localities of studies, from 1703 papers published between 1985 and August 2012. Most published research (64%) is generated from Europe and North America and being dedicated to core data analysis, with 29% of the studies analysed dedicated to Lepidoptera and 22% Diptera: which are well above their contribution to the currently identified insect species richness (estimated at 13% and 17% respectively). Research publications on Coleoptera fall well short of their proportional contribution (19% of publications but 39% of insect species identified), and to a lesser extent so do Hemiptera, and Hymenoptera. Species specific responses to changes in temperature by assessing distribution/range shifts or changes in abundance were the most commonly used methods of assessing the impact of climate change on insects. Research on insects and climate change to date is dominated by manuscripts assessing butterflies in Europe, insects of economic and/or environmental concern in forestry, agriculture, and model organisms. The research on understanding how insects will respond to a rapidly changing climate is still in its infancy, but the current trends of publications give a good basis for how we are attempting to assess insect responses. In particular, there is a crucial need for broader studies of ecological, behavioural, physiological and life history responses to be addressed across a greater range of geographic locations, particularly Asia, Africa and Australasia, and in areas of high human population growth and habitat modification. It is still too early in our understanding of taxa responses to climate change to know if charismatic taxa, such as butterflies, or

  3. Climate Change: Basic Information

    MedlinePlus

    ... EPA United States Environmental Protection Agency Search Search Climate Change Share Facebook Twitter Google+ Pinterest Contact Us Climate Change: Basic Information On This Page Climate change is ...

  4. New Approaches to FIA data for understanding distribution, abundance, and response to climate change

    Treesearch

    Kai Zhu; Souparno Ghosh; Alan E. Gelfand; James S. Clark

    2012-01-01

    We are using Forest Inventory and Analysis data to examine evidence for tree responses to climate change. By comparing seedling and tree occurrence data, we found that there is not yet evidence that tree populations in the eastern half of the United States are shifting geographic ranges to higher latitude in response to warming temperature. We are developing novel...

  5. Vegetation changes of sand fields in Northern China in response to climatic change, 1982-2013

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yuan, W.; Wu, S. Y.; Hou, S.

    2016-12-01

    The semi-arid region in North China is one of the areas that has experienced expansion of sand fields in recent decades with serious consequences on the lives of hundreds of million people. How these sand fields respond to global warming is an important scientific question with great practical significance. This study focuses on the four major sand fields in this region, i.e. Hulunbeeir, Horqin, Otindag and Mu Us, and examines the past vegetation changes in response to climate change. Based on a comparison of common satellite datasets (SPOT, MODIS, GIMMS), the GIMMS NDVI product is selected for its relatively long time span and stability. We use both linear regression and nonparametric Greenness Rate of Change (GRC) index to calculate the trends, and both results are highly consistent with each other. Our results show that during the study period of 1982-2013, Mu Us, the southernmost sand field, experienced the largest amount of greening, whereas most of the other sand fields experienced little changes. NDVI showed most increase in the warm seasons (summer and fall), and generally decreased in winter. Spatial variations exists with such trends. For most of the sandy fields, NDVI increased in the South and East, and decreased in the North and West. These changes could be related to the decline of Eastern Asian Summer Monsoon in recent decades, which tends to increase precipitation in the South and decrease it in the North. Using ERA-Interim reanalysis data, we examine the relationship between NDVI and a variety of climate factors. We found that NDVI is most closely associated with temperature, evaporation, precipitation, surface sensible heat flux, and wind. A multiple linear regression model shows that these factors together could explain 76% of the total variance in NDVI. Using relative weights to assess the independent contribution of these variables, we found that the most important factor is temperature, followed by precipitation and evaporation, wind and

  6. Contrasted demographic responses facing future climate change in Southern Ocean seabirds.

    PubMed

    Barbraud, Christophe; Rivalan, Philippe; Inchausti, Pablo; Nevoux, Marie; Rolland, Virginie; Weimerskirch, Henri

    2011-01-01

    1. Recent climate change has affected a wide range of species, but predicting population responses to projected climate change using population dynamics theory and models remains challenging, and very few attempts have been made. The Southern Ocean sea surface temperature and sea ice extent are projected to warm and shrink as concentrations of atmospheric greenhouse gases increase, and several top predator species are affected by fluctuations in these oceanographic variables. 2. We compared and projected the population responses of three seabird species living in sub-tropical, sub-Antarctic and Antarctic biomes to predicted climate change over the next 50 years. Using stochastic population models we combined long-term demographic datasets and projections of sea surface temperature and sea ice extent for three different IPCC emission scenarios (from most to least severe: A1B, A2, B1) from general circulation models of Earth's climate. 3. We found that climate mostly affected the probability to breed successfully, and in one case adult survival. Interestingly, frequent nonlinear relationships in demographic responses to climate were detected. Models forced by future predicted climatic change provided contrasted population responses depending on the species considered. The northernmost distributed species was predicted to be little affected by a future warming of the Southern Ocean, whereas steep declines were projected for the more southerly distributed species due to sea surface temperature warming and decrease in sea ice extent. For the most southerly distributed species, the A1B and B1 emission scenarios were respectively the most and less damaging. For the two other species, population responses were similar for all emission scenarios. 4. This is among the first attempts to study the demographic responses for several populations with contrasted environmental conditions, which illustrates that investigating the effects of climate change on core population dynamics

  7. Gender differences in farmers' responses to climate change adaptation in Yongqiao District, China.

    PubMed

    Jin, Jianjun; Wang, Xiaomin; Gao, Yiwei

    2015-12-15

    This study examines the gender differences in farmers' responses to climate change adaption in Yongqiao District, China. A random sampling technique was used to select 220 household heads, while descriptive statistics and binary logit models were used to analyze the data obtained from the households. We determine that male and female respondents are not significantly different in their knowledge and perceptions of climate change, but there is a gender difference in adopting climate change adaptation measures. Male-headed households are more likely to adopt new technology for water conservation and to increase investment in irrigation infrastructure. The research also indicates that the adaptation decisions of male and female heads are influenced by different sets of factors. The findings of this research help to elucidate the determinants of climate change adaptation decisions for male and female-headed households and the strategic interventions necessary for effective adaptation. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  8. The Response of Vegetation Zonation in Rocky Mountain Ecotones to Climate Change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Foster, A.; Shuman, J. K.; Shugart, H. H., Jr.

    2014-12-01

    Mean annual temperatures in the western United States have increased in the last few decades, and during the 21st century, it is predicted that this warming trend will continue. This change in climate may create shifts in the optimal ranges of vegetation within the Rocky Mountains, requiring species migration. For a species at the top of a mountain there may be little room for upward migration. These forests are a crucial part of the US's carbon budget, thus it is important to analyze how climate change will affect the zonation and species composition of vegetation in Rocky Mountain landscapes. UVAFME is an individual-based gap model that simulates biomass and species composition of a forest. Originally developed for northeast China and applied across all of Russia, this model has accurately simulated diverse forests in a range of climates, as well as the response of these forests to climate change. UVAFME is first calibrated to several sites along the Colorado and Wyoming Rocky Mountains using species, soil, and climate data from the US Forest Service. The initial model output of biomass and species composition is tested against forest inventory data and expected forest type ecotone along an elevational gradient. The model is then run with a linear increase in temperature of 3°C over 200 years, corresponding to the A1B IPPC climate scenario. These results are compared to current forest inventory data and to model runs without climate change. We project that with climate change species ranges will shift up the mountain, leading to an increase in the deciduous species Populus tremuloides, and a decrease in coniferous species at high elevations. These results are an important step in evaluating the response of Rocky Mountain vegetation to climate change and will help predict the future of these crucial ecosystems.

  9. Sex-specific responses to climate change in plants alter population sex ratio and performance.

    PubMed

    Petry, William K; Soule, Judith D; Iler, Amy M; Chicas-Mosier, Ana; Inouye, David W; Miller, Tom E X; Mooney, Kailen A

    2016-07-01

    Males and females are ecologically distinct in many species, but whether responses to climate change are sex-specific is unknown. We document sex-specific responses to climate change in the plant Valeriana edulis (valerian) over four decades and across its 1800-meter elevation range. Increased elevation was associated with increased water availability and female frequency, likely owing to sex-specific water use efficiency and survival. Recent aridification caused male frequency to move upslope at 175 meters per decade, a rate of trait shift outpacing reported species' range shifts by an order of magnitude. This increase in male frequency reduced pollen limitation and increased seedset. Coupled with previous studies reporting sex-specific arthropod communities, these results underscore the importance of ecological differences between the sexes in mediating biological responses to climate change. Copyright © 2016, American Association for the Advancement of Science.

  10. Contrasting responses to a climate regime change by sympatric, ice-dependent predators.

    PubMed

    Younger, Jane L; van den Hoff, John; Wienecke, Barbara; Hindell, Mark; Miller, Karen J

    2016-03-15

    Models that predict changes in the abundance and distribution of fauna under future climate change scenarios often assume that ecological niche and habitat availability are the major determinants of species' responses to climate change. However, individual species may have very different capacities to adapt to environmental change, as determined by intrinsic factors such as their dispersal ability, genetic diversity, generation time and rate of evolution. These intrinsic factors are usually excluded from forecasts of species' abundance and distribution changes. We aimed to determine the importance of these factors by comparing the impact of the most recent climate regime change, the late Pleistocene glacial-interglacial transition, on two sympatric, ice-dependent meso-predators, the emperor penguin (Aptenodytes forsteri) and Weddell seal (Leptonychotes weddellii). We reconstructed the population trend of emperor penguins and Weddell seals in East Antarctica over the past 75,000 years using mitochondrial DNA sequences and an extended Bayesian skyline plot method. We also assessed patterns of contemporary population structure and genetic diversity. Despite their overlapping distributions and shared dependence on sea ice, our genetic data revealed very different responses to climate warming between these species. The emperor penguin population grew rapidly following the glacial-interglacial transition, but the size of the Weddell seal population did not change. The expansion of emperor penguin numbers during the warm Holocene may have been facilitated by their higher dispersal ability and gene flow among colonies, and fine-scale differences in preferred foraging locations. The vastly different climate change responses of two sympatric ice-dependent predators suggests that differing adaptive capacities and/or fine-scale niche differences can play a major role in species' climate change responses, and that adaptive capacity should be considered alongside niche and

  11. Response of western mountain ecosystems to climatic variability and change: The Western Mountain Initiative

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Stephenson, Nathan L.; Peterson, David A.; Fagre, Daniel B.; Allen, Craig; McKenzie, Donald; Baron, Jill; O'Brien, K.

    2006-01-01

    Mountain ecosystems within our national parks and other protected areas provide valuable goods and services such as clean water, biodiversity conservation, and recreational opportunities, but their potential responses to expected climatic changes are inadequately understood. The Western Mountain Initiative (WMI) is a collaboration of scientists whose research focuses on understanding and predicting responses of western mountain ecosystems to climatic variability and change. It is a legacy of the Global Change Research Program initiated by the National Park Service (NPS) in 1991 and continued by the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) to this day as part of the U.S. Climate Change Science Program (http://www.climatescience.gov/). All WMI scientists are active participants in CIRMOUNT, and seek to further its goals.

  12. The response of vegetation on the Andean flank in western Amazonia to Pleistocene climate change.

    PubMed

    Cárdenas, Macarena L; Gosling, William D; Sherlock, Sarah C; Poole, Imogen; Pennington, R Toby; Mothes, Patricia

    2011-02-25

    A reconstruction of past environmental change from Ecuador reveals the response of lower montane forest on the Andean flank in western Amazonia to glacial-interglacial global climate change. Radiometric dating of volcanic ash indicates that deposition occurred ~324,000 to 193,000 years ago during parts of Marine Isotope Stages 9, 7, and 6. Fossil pollen and wood preserved within organic sediments suggest that the composition of the forest altered radically in response to glacial-interglacial climate change. The presence of Podocarpus macrofossils ~1000 meters below the lower limit of their modern distribution indicates a relative cooling of at least 5°C during glacials and persistence of wet conditions. Interglacial deposits contain thermophilic palms suggesting warm and wet climates. Hence, global temperature change can radically alter vegetation communities and biodiversity in this region.

  13. Modeling phenological responses of Inner Mongolia grassland species to regional climate change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Qiuyue; Xu, Lin; Pan, Xuebiao; Zhang, Lizhen; Li, Chao; Yang, Ning; Qi, Jiaguo

    2016-01-01

    Plant phenology is an important indicator of ecosystem dynamics and services. However, little is understood of its responses to climate change, particularly in ecologically sensitive regions such as arid and semi-arid grasslands. In this study, we analyzed a long-term climate and plant phenology dataset of thirteen grassland species in the Inner Mongolia of China, collected during 1981-2011 time period, to understand temporal patterns of plant phenology and then developed a simple chilling-adjusted physiological model to simulate phenological responses of each plant species to climate change. The results of regional climate analysis suggested that the minimum temperature was increasing at a greater rate than mean and maximum temperatures in the region and the climate variability had significant impacts on vegetation phenology. Chilling from an early stage in spring in general slowed down the phenological development in most plant species, although there were some inconsistencies among sites and years. Specifically, we found lower precipitation during green-up resulted in delayed flowering, which may attribute to plant self-adjustment strategy to respond changes in climate. These climate dependent phenologies were characterized by a simple physiological model. Scenario analysis suggested that by 2071-2100 significant shifts in plant phenology are expected in Inner Mongolia, including as much as 6-11 days earlier in green-up time and 8-11 days shorter in growing season due to earlier senescence.

  14. Agroecology: Implications for plant response to climate change

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Agricultural ecosystems (agroecosystems) represent the balance between the physiological responses of plants and plant canopies and the energy exchanges. Rising temperature and increasing CO2 coupled with an increase in variability of precipitation will create a complex set of interactions on plant ...

  15. Crop yield response to climate change varies with crop spatial distribution pattern

    DOE PAGES

    Leng, Guoyong; Huang, Maoyi

    2017-05-03

    The linkage between crop yield and climate variability has been confirmed in numerous studies using statistical approaches. A crucial assumption in these studies is that crop spatial distribution pattern is constant over time. Here, we explore how changes in county-level corn spatial distribution pattern modulate the response of its yields to climate change at the state level over the Contiguous United States. Our results show that corn yield response to climate change varies with crop spatial distribution pattern, with distinct impacts on the magnitude and even the direction at the state level. Corn yield is predicted to decrease by 20~40%more » by 2050s when considering crop spatial distribution pattern changes, which is 6~12% less than the estimates with fixed cropping pattern. The beneficial effects are mainly achieved by reducing the negative impacts of daily maximum temperature and strengthening the positive impacts of precipitation. Our results indicate that previous empirical studies could be biased in assessing climate change impacts by ignoring the changes in crop spatial distribution pattern. As a result, this has great implications for understanding the increasing debates on whether climate change will be a net gain or loss for regional agriculture.« less

  16. Crop yield response to climate change varies with crop spatial distribution pattern.

    PubMed

    Leng, Guoyong; Huang, Maoyi

    2017-05-03

    The linkage between crop yield and climate variability has been confirmed in numerous studies using statistical approaches. A crucial assumption in these studies is that crop spatial distribution pattern is constant over time. Here, we explore how changes in county-level corn spatial distribution pattern modulate the response of its yields to climate change at the state level over the Contiguous United States. Our results show that corn yield response to climate change varies with crop spatial distribution pattern, with distinct impacts on the magnitude and even the direction at the state level. Corn yield is predicted to decrease by 20~40% by 2050 s when considering crop spatial distribution pattern changes, which is 6~12% less than the estimates with fixed cropping pattern. The beneficial effects are mainly achieved by reducing the negative impacts of daily maximum temperature and strengthening the positive impacts of precipitation. Our results indicate that previous empirical studies could be biased in assessing climate change impacts by ignoring the changes in crop spatial distribution pattern. This has great implications for understanding the increasing debates on whether climate change will be a net gain or loss for regional agriculture.

  17. Predicting Climate Change Using Response Theory: Global Averages and Spatial Patterns

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lucarini, Valerio; Ragone, Francesco; Lunkeit, Frank

    2017-02-01

    The provision of accurate methods for predicting the climate response to anthropogenic and natural forcings is a key contemporary scientific challenge. Using a simplified and efficient open-source general circulation model of the atmosphere featuring O(10^5) degrees of freedom, we show how it is possible to approach such a problem using nonequilibrium statistical mechanics. Response theory allows one to practically compute the time-dependent measure supported on the pullback attractor of the climate system, whose dynamics is non-autonomous as a result of time-dependent forcings. We propose a simple yet efficient method for predicting—at any lead time and in an ensemble sense—the change in climate properties resulting from increase in the concentration of CO_2 using test perturbation model runs. We assess strengths and limitations of the response theory in predicting the changes in the globally averaged values of surface temperature and of the yearly total precipitation, as well as in their spatial patterns. The quality of the predictions obtained for the surface temperature fields is rather good, while in the case of precipitation a good skill is observed only for the global average. We also show how it is possible to define accurately concepts like the inertia of the climate system or to predict when climate change is detectable given a scenario of forcing. Our analysis can be extended for dealing with more complex portfolios of forcings and can be adapted to treat, in principle, any climate observable. Our conclusion is that climate change is indeed a problem that can be effectively seen through a statistical mechanical lens, and that there is great potential for optimizing the current coordinated modelling exercises run for the preparation of the subsequent reports of the Intergovernmental Panel for Climate Change.

  18. Multidisciplinary views in modeling response to climate change: A workshop summary

    SciTech Connect

    Smith, J.E.; Heath, L.S.

    1998-09-01

    The report summarizes presentations at a workshop jointly sponsored by the Interdisciplinary Climate Systems Section of the National Center for Atmospheric Research and the Northern Global Change Research Program of the USDA Forest Service. This year`s title was Moving from Equilibrium to Transient GCMs (general circulation models): Linking Physiological Responses, Community Responses, and Ecological Rates of Change with Social-Economic Factors. Topics included global-scale climate simulations, continental-scale biotic models, ecosystem-level research, and issues associated with developing large-scale assessments.

  19. Holocene Climate and Catchment-Specific Responses to Climate Change, Recorded in a Transect of Icelandic Lakes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Geirsdottir, A.; Axford, Y.; Florian, C. R.; Miller, G. H.; Crump, S. E.; Larsen, D. J.; Olafsdóttir, S.; Thordarson, T.; Blair, C.

    2015-12-01

    Holocene paleoclimate reconstructions from the northern North Atlantic landmasses exhibit greater responses to climate forcings than other Arctic regions presumably tied to changes in North Atlantic ocean-atmosphere circulation. Here we present an overview of high-resolution, precisely dated and PSV synchronized Holocene lake sediment records on Iceland, where we employ diverse proxies at sites spanning a broad modern climate gradient, from the presently glaciated highlands to the coastal lowlands. Despite substantial differences in catchment specific processes that influence each lake record, the multi-proxy reconstructions over the last 10 ka show remarkably consistent trends, especially throughout the mid to late Holocene cooling related to the slow decrease in summer insolation. Of particular note are highly non-linear abrupt departures of centennial scale summer cold periods such as at 5.5 ka, ~4.2 ka; ~3.0 ka, ~1.5 ka, 0.7 ka, and 0.2 ka. Some of the abrupt shifts may be related to Icelandic volcanism influencing catchment stability, but the lack of a full recovery to pre-existing values after the perturbation suggests increased periglacial activity, decreased vegetation cover, and glacier growth in Iceland. That these shifts reflect regional climate changes is also supported by contemporaneous shifts documented elsewhere in the northern North Atlantic region. Although timing and abruptness of these shifts is similar between our Icelandic lake records, their magnitude can differ substantially. Regional-scale factors such as volcanism likely modulate climatic responses to radiative forcing; and at the same time, local watershed characteristics like vegetation cover and soil properties produce site-specific environmental responses to climate change. Our Icelandic lake records provide opportunities to observe the precise timing of local climate shifts and corresponding environmental responses, and thus to disentangle these effects.

  20. The atmospheric heat engine response to climate change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pauluis, O. M.

    2014-12-01

    Moist convection is characterized by complex interactions between dynamics and thermodynamics. As air parcels within the atmosphere, they experience multiple thermodynamic transformations, such as compression and expansion, diabatic heating and cooling, condensation and mixing. These transformations correspond to those of a heat engine that produces kinetic energy while transporting energy from a warm source to a colder sink. This atmospheric heat engine is however directly affected by moist processes. First, falling precipitation acts as a break on the circulation by dissipating a significant amount of kinetic energy. Second, evaporation of unsaturated water and diffusion of water vapor are irrevesible processes that also reduce the amount of work that can be produced. An important challenge is to quantify the impacts that these two effects have on the generation of kinetic energy. Here, I will introduce a new technique - the Mean Air Flow As Lagragian Dynamics Approximation (MAFALDA) - that can be used to systematically analyze the thermodynamic behavior of complex atmospheric flows. This approach relies on sorting the upward mass transport in terms of the equivalent potential temperature of the air parcels to obtain an isentropic streamfunction. This streamfunction is then used to determine the thermodynamic evolution of air parcels as they move through the atmosphere. This approach is applied to analyze how convective systems would behave in a warmer climate. It is shown that an increase in atmospheric temperature lead to a significant increase of the amount of kinetic energy that is produced per unit of mass of air transported. At the same time, the total generation of kinetic energy is only slightly affected. Taken together, these findings imply that, in a warming atmosphere, the number of intense convective events will be reduced, while their intensity should increase. I will also discuss the new possibility of systematically studying the thermodynamic

  1. Widespread rapid reductions in body size of adult salamanders in response to climate change.

    PubMed

    Caruso, Nicholas M; Sears, Michael W; Adams, Dean C; Lips, Karen R

    2014-06-01

    Reduction in body size is a major response to climate change, yet evidence in globally imperiled amphibians is lacking. Shifts in average population body size could indicate either plasticity in the growth response to changing climates through changes in allocation and energetics, or through selection for decreased size where energy is limiting. We compared historic and contemporary size measurements in 15 Plethodon species from 102 populations (9450 individuals) and found that six species exhibited significant reductions in body size over 55 years. Biophysical models, accounting for actual changes in moisture and air temperature over that period, showed a 7.1-7.9% increase in metabolic expenditure at three latitudes but showed no change in annual duration of activity. Reduced size was greatest at southern latitudes in regions experiencing the greatest drying and warming. Our results are consistent with a plastic response of body size to climate change through reductions in body size as mediated through increased metabolism. These rapid reductions in body size over the past few decades have significance for the susceptibility of amphibians to environmental change, and relevance for whether adaptation can keep pace with climate change in the future.

  2. U.S. and Chinese Scientists Discuss the Ocean's Response to Climate Change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    DiMarco, Steven F.; Wu, Dexing

    2009-04-01

    Climate Change and Coastal Oceans Workshop; Qingdao, China, 26-28 October 2008; A 3-day workshop was held in China to discuss coastal ocean processes, the biogeochemistry of large river-dominated ocean margins (RiOMars), and climate change and variability studies; to formulate a strategy for a joint venture to assess how climate change has affected coastal oceans; and to predict the ocean's response to future change scenarios. The workshop, which brought together experts from Texas A&M University (TAMU) and five Chinese universities and institutes—Ocean University of China (OUC), Institute of Oceanology of the Chinese Academy of Sciences (IOCAS), Xiamen University (XU), Tianjin University of Science and Technology (TUST), and East China Normal University (ECNU), highlighted the similarities in topics important to North America and Asia. As indicated by the 2007 Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change report, climate change imposes far-reaching challenges on society. This workshop focused on two large, river-dominated coastal environments: the Mississippi-Atchafalaya system and the Changjiang estuary. Numerous parallels exist between the impacts of the Changjiang on the East China Sea and the Mississippi on the Gulf of Mexico. These RiOMars are ideal for examining the impacts of climate change because they are characterized by large, heavily populated watersheds in two countries that are important in determining the human carbon footprint. The hydrology, biodiversity, and geochemical characteristics of these systems have been greatly influenced by land use and regional-scale climate change. Workshop participants reviewed current progress in understanding physical and biogeochemical processes controlling the two RiOMars, brainstormed challenges in developing a multidisciplinary system capable of assessing and predicting impacts of global climate change on these RiOMars, and identified a multifaceted approach to address these challenges.

  3. Corticosterone responses and personality in birds: Individual variation and the ability to cope with environmental changes due to climate change.

    PubMed

    Cockrem, John F

    2013-09-01

    Birds can respond to an internal or external stimulus with activation of the HPA axis and secretion of corticosterone. There is considerable individual variation in corticosterone responses, and individual responses can be very different from the mean response for a group of birds. Corticosterone responses and behavioural responses to environmental stimuli are determined by individual characteristics called personality. It is proposed that birds with low corticosterone responses and proactive personalities are likely to be more successful (have greater fitness) in constant or predictable conditions, whilst birds with reactive personalities and high corticosterone responses will be more successful in changing or unpredictable conditions. The relationship between corticosterone responses and fitness thus depends on the prevailing environmental conditions, so birds with either low or high corticosterone responses can have the greatest fitness and be most successful, but in different situations. It is also proposed that birds with reactive personalities and high corticosterone responses will be better able to cope with environmental changes due to climate change than birds with proactive personalities and relatively low corticosterone responses. Phenotypic plasticity in corticosterone responses can be quantified using a reaction norm approach, and reaction norms can be used to determine the degree of plasticity in corticosterone responses of individual birds, and mean levels of plasticity in responses of species of birds. Individual corticosterone responses and personality, and reaction norms for corticosterone responses, can in future be used to predict the ability of birds to cope with environmental changes due to climate change.

  4. Increased light, moderate, and severe clear-air turbulence in response to climate change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Williams, Paul

    2017-04-01

    Anthropogenic climate change is expected to strengthen the vertical wind shears at aircraft cruising altitudes within the atmospheric jet streams. Such a strengthening would increase the prevalence of shear instabilities, which generate clear-air turbulence. Climate modelling studies have indicated that the amount of moderate-or-greater clear-air turbulence on transatlantic flight routes in winter will increase significantly in future as the climate changes. However, the individual responses of light, moderate, and severe clear-air turbulence have not previously been studied, despite their importance for aircraft operations. Here we use climate model simulations to analyse the transatlantic wintertime clear-air turbulence response to climate change in five aviation-relevant turbulence strength categories. We find that the probability distributions for an ensemble of 21 clear-air turbulence diagnostics generally gain probability in their right-hand tails when the atmospheric carbon dioxide concentration is doubled. By converting the diagnostics into equivalent eddy dissipation rates, we find that the ensemble-average airspace volume containing light clear-air turbulence increases by 59% (with an intra-ensemble range of 43-68%), light-to-moderate by 75% (39-96%), moderate by 94% (37-118%), moderate-to-severe by 127% (30-170%), and severe by 149% (36-188%). These results suggest that the prevalence of transatlantic wintertime clear-air turbulence will increase significantly in all aviation-relevant strength categories as the climate changes.

  5. Increased light, moderate, and severe clear-air turbulence in response to climate change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Williams, Paul D.

    2017-05-01

    Anthropogenic climate change is expected to strengthen the vertical wind shears at aircraft cruising altitudes within the atmospheric jet streams. Such a strengthening would increase the prevalence of the shear instabilities that generate clear-air turbulence. Climate modelling studies have indicated that the amount of moderate-or-greater clear-air turbulence on transatlantic flight routes in winter will increase significantly in future as the climate changes. However, the individual responses of light, moderate, and severe clear-air turbulence have not previously been studied, despite their importance for aircraft operations. Here, we use climate model simulations to analyse the transatlantic wintertime clear-air turbulence response to climate change in five aviation-relevant turbulence strength categories. We find that the probability distributions for an ensemble of 21 clear-air turbulence diagnostics generally gain probability in their right-hand tails when the atmospheric carbon dioxide concentration is doubled. By converting the diagnostics into eddy dissipation rates, we find that the ensembleaverage airspace volume containing light clear-air turbulence increases by 59% (with an intra-ensemble range of 43%-68%), light-to-moderate by 75% (39%-96%), moderate by 94% (37%-118%), moderate-to-severe by 127% (30%-170%), and severe by 149% (36%-188%). These results suggest that the prevalence of transatlantic wintertime clear-air turbulence will increase significantly in all aviation-relevant strength categories as the climate changes.

  6. Responses to historical climate change identify contemporary threats to diversity in Dodecatheon.

    PubMed

    Oberle, Brad; Schaal, Barbara A

    2011-04-05

    Anthropogenic climate change may threaten many species with extinction. However, species at risk today survived global climate change in recent geological history. Describing how habitat tracking and adaptation allowed species to survive warming since the end of the Pleistocene can indicate the relative importance of dispersal and natural selection during climate change. By taking this historical perspective, we can identify how contemporary climate change could interfere with these mechanisms and threaten the most vulnerable species. We focused on a group of closely related plant species in the genus Dodecatheon (Primulaceae) in eastern North America. Two rare species (Dodecatheon amethystinum and Dodecatheon frenchii) that are endemic to patchy cool cliffs may be glacial relicts whose ranges constricted following the last glacial maximum. Alternatively, these species may be extreme ecotypes of a single widespread species (Dodecatheon meadia) that quickly adapted to microclimatic differences among habitats. We test support for these alternative scenarios by combining ecophysiological and population genetic data at a regional scale. An important ecophysiological trait distinguishes rare species from D. meadia, but only a few northern populations of D. amethystinum are genetically distinctive. These relict populations indicate that habitat tracking did occur with historical climate change. However, relatively stronger evidence for isolation by distance and admixture suggests that local adaptation and genetic introgression have been at least as important. The complex response of Dodecatheon to historical climate change suggests that contemporary conservation efforts should accommodate evolutionary processes, in some cases by restoring genetic connectivity between ecologically differentiated populations.

  7. Terrestrial ecosystems response to climate and climate change: plant migration and the future of forested systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Flanagan, S.; Hurtt, G. C.; Fisk, J.; Sahajpal, R.

    2013-12-01

    Climate change alters ecosystem structure and type. A robust understanding of climate-ecosystem relationships can be used to forecast ecosystem structure and distribution from climate change. However, current efforts to forecast future carbon sequestration rates often oversimplify or overlook the role of plant migration and focus on potential vegetation. The difficulty in accounting for landscape complexity, disturbance rates, species-specific interactions, and dispersal properties leads to this oversimplification or non-inclusion of migration when forecasting. Forest gap models can capture many of these processes, but are limited in the size of the domain they simulate because of computational time. For large scale simulations a gap model is often used to represent a much larger domain, potentially failing to capture a number of ecosystem processes as a 30m by 30m gap model may be used to represent a 0.5 x 0.5 degree site. Another method to model migration is to simply leave a fraction of every seed type in every site, which only generates scenarios that represent maximum migration rates. As a solution to these problems we introduced a migration function to the Ecosystem Demography (ED) model. ED is an individual tree based model that uses a size and age-structured approximation for the first moment of the stochastic ecosystem model. Hence it can simulate large domains without being too computational intensive. However, explicit locations of individual trees in a site are unknown, just the total number of trees in the site. Therefore, we developed a method to pseudo-spatially model migration. A simple simulator was built and it was shown that over a large number of runs expected migration rates can be reproduced. The simulator was placed into ED and climate change scenarios run. With fitted species-specific dispersal kernels the role that plant migration will play in the future of forested systems in North America was identified. Issues that still need to be

  8. Central European vegetation response to abrupt climate change at 8.2 ka

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tinner, Willy; Lotter, André F.

    2001-06-01

    Oxygen isotope records show a major climatic reversal at 8.2 ka in Greenland and Europe. Annually laminated sediments from two lakes in Switzerland and Germany were sampled contiguously to assess the response of European vegetation to climate change ca. 8.2 ka with time resolution and precision comparable to those of the Greenland ice cores. The pollen assemblages show pronounced and immediate responses (0 20 yr) of terrestrial vegetation to the climatic change at 8.2 ka. A sudden collapse of Corylus avellana (hazel) was accompanied by the rapid expansion of Pinus (pine), Betula (birch), and Tilia (linden), and by the invasion of Fagus silvatica (beech) and Abies alba (fir). Vegetational changes suggest that climatic cooling reduced drought stress, allowing more drought-sensitive and taller growing species to out-compete Corylus avellana by forming denser forest canopies. Climate cooling at 8.2 ka and the immediate reorganization of terrestrial ecosystems has gone unrecognized by previous pollen studies. On the basis of our data we conclude that the early Holocene high abundance of C. avellana in Europe was climatically caused, and we question the conventional opinion that postglacial expansions of F. silvatica and A. alba were controlled by low migration rates rather than by climate. The close connection between climatic change and vegetational response at a subcontinental scale implies that forecasted global warming may trigger rapid collapses, expansions, and invasions of tree species.

  9. Response of a rocky intertidal ecosystem engineer and community dominant to climate change.

    PubMed

    Menge, Bruce A; Chan, Francis; Lubchenco, Jane

    2008-02-01

    To evaluate how climate change might impact a competitively dominant ecological engineer, we analysed the growth response of the mussel Mytilus californianus to climate patterns [El Niño-Southern Oscillation, Pacific Decadal Oscillation (PDO)]. Mussels grew faster during warmer climatic events. Growth was initially faster on a more productive cape compared to a less productive cape. Growth rates at the two capes merged in 2002, coincidentally with a several year-long shift from warm to cool PDO conditions. To determine the mechanism underlying this response, we examined growth responses to intertidal sea and air temperatures, phytoplankton, sea level and tide height. Together, water temperature (32%) and food (12.5%) explained 44.5% of the variance in mussel growth; contributions of other factors were not significant. In turn, water temperature and food respond to climate-driven variation in upwelling and other, unknown factors. Understanding responses of ecosystem engineers to climate change will require knowing direct thermal effects and indirect effects of factors altered by temperature change.

  10. Functional foods and urban agriculture: two responses to climate change-related food insecurity.

    PubMed

    Dixon, Jane M; Donati, Kelly J; Pike, Lucy L; Hattersley, Libby

    2009-01-01

    Affluent diets have negative effects on the health of the population and the environment. Moreover, the ability of industrialised agricultural ecosystems to continue to supply these diets is threatened by the anticipated consequences of climate change. By challenging the ongoing supply the diets of affluent countries, climate change provides a population and environmental health opportunity. This paper contrasts two strategies for dealing with climate change-related food insecurity. Functional foods are being positioned as one response because they are considered a hyper-efficient mechanism for supplying essential micronutrients. An alternative response is civic and urban agriculture. Rather than emphasising increased economic or nutritional efficiencies, civic agriculture presents a holistic approach to food security that is more directly connected to the economic, environmental and social factors that affect diet and health.

  11. The role of atmospheric circulation in the Mediterranean precipitation response to climate change.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zappa, Giuseppe; Hoskins, Brian; Shepherd, Ted

    2017-04-01

    The Mediterranean region has been identified as a climate change hot-spot, due to a projected reduction in precipitation which could have large socio—economic impacts by affecting fresh water availability for agricultural and societal needs. However, the mechanisms that control such precipitation change are not well understood and there is large uncertainty in the amplitude of the projected precipitation change. We here show that more than 80% of the variance in the wintertime precipitation change in the CMIP5 models projections is linked to uncertainty in the atmospheric circulation response to climate change. This is demonstrated by introducing a simple index of atmospheric circulation based on the intensity of the westerly flow in North Africa. It is shown that the relationship between precipitation and circulation under climate change is consistent to what is found in the year to year variability. However, many CMIP5 climate models have biases in their ability of capturing the observed relationship between circulation and precipitation. This suggests that climate models may tend to underestimate the realised precipitation change for any given change in the atmospheric circulation.

  12. Mangroves Response to Climate Change: A Review of Recent Findings on Mangrove Extension and Distribution.

    PubMed

    Godoy, Mario D P; de Lacerda, Luiz D

    2015-01-01

    Mangroves function as a natural coastline protection for erosion and inundation, providing important environmental services. Due to their geographical distribution at the continent-ocean interface, the mangrove habitat may suffer heavy impacts from global climate change, maximized by local human activities occurring in a given coastal region. This review analyzed the literature published over the last 25 years, on the documented response of mangroves to environmental change caused by global climate change, taking into consideration 104 case studies and predictive modeling, worldwide. Most studies appeared after the year 2000, as a response to the 1997 IPCC report. Although many reports showed that the world's mangrove area is decreasing due to direct anthropogenic pressure, several others, however, showed that in a variety of habitats mangroves are expanding as a response to global climate change. Worldwide, pole ward migration is extending the latitudinal limits of mangroves due to warmer winters and decreasing the frequency of extreme low temperatures, whereas in low-lying coastal plains, mangroves are migrating landward due to sea level rise, as demonstrated for the NE Brazilian coast. Taking into consideration climate change alone, mangroves in most areas will display a positive response. In some areas however, such as low-lying oceanic islands, such as in the Pacific and the Caribbean, and constrained coastlines, such as the SE Brazilian coast, mangroves will most probably not survive.

  13. Simulated Response of Tropical Climate to Changes in ice Sheet and Carbon Dioxide Forcings

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Foster, T. M.; Poulsen, C. J.

    2003-12-01

    Proxy records indicate that the tropical climate has experienced substantial changes that appear to coincide with Dansgaard-Oeschger and glacial-interglacial climate changes in the northern hemisphere. The source of the tropical climate variability is debated. To date, climate models have exhibited a relatively minor tropical climate response to northern hemisphere extratropical forcing. To further explore the influence of northern hemisphere extratropical forcing on tropical climate, a series of coupled ocean-atmosphere experiments using the Fast Ocean-Atmosphere Model have been performed to test the influence of the Laurentide Ice Sheet, and the post-glacial CO2 rise on tropical climate. The control experiment is a Last Glacial Maximum simulation (including ice-sheet configuration, orbital parameters, land surface characteristics, and trace gas concentrations appropriate for 21k). Two additional experiments have been conducted, the first with an 11k ice-sheet configuration and the second with an 11k ice-sheet configuration and 280 ppm CO2. All other boundary conditions remain constant in these sensitivity experiments. Preliminary model results indicate that the extratropical forcing has a substantial effect on tropical climate and the ITCZ. Deglaciation causes a pronounced (5-10\\deg latitude) northward shift in the position of the ITCZ. This in turn has an effect on SST and thermocline structure in the Pacific, leading to changes in the periodicity and magnitude of interannual and interdecadal variability. The tropical Pacific warms 2-3\\deg C in the LGM simulation compared to the 11k ice-sheet experiment, whereas a cooling of 10\\deg C in the Southern Ocean, south of Australia, occurs between the same two experiments. Furthermore, the Asian monsoon appears to be affected by the change in glacial boundary conditions with stronger convective precipitation during times of full glaciation. Model results demonstrate that extratropical forcing may have caused

  14. Stream nitrate responses to hydrological forcing and climate change in northern forests of the USA (Invited)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sebestyen, S. D.; Campbell, J. L.; Shanley, J. B.; Pourmokhtarian, A.; Driscoll, C. T.; Boyer, E. W.

    2009-12-01

    There is a need to understand how climate variability and change affect nutrient delivery to surface waters. We analyzed long-term records of hydrochemical data to explore how the forms, concentrations, and loadings of nitrogen in forest streams throughout the northern USA vary with catchment wetness. We considered projected changes in growing season length and precipitation patterns to simulate future climate scenarios and to assess how stream nitrate loading responds to hydrological forcing under different climate change scenarios. At the Sleepers River Research Watershed in northeastern Vermont, model results suggest that stream nutrient loadings over the next century will respond to hydrological forcing during climate change that affects the amount of water that flows through the landscape. For example, growing season stream water yield (+20%) and nitrate loadings (+57%) increase in response to greater amounts of precipitation (+28%) during a warmer climate with a longer growing season (+43 days). We further explore these findings by presenting model results from a biogeochemical process model (PnET-BGC) to separate changes that are due to biogeochemical cycling and the effects of hydrological forcing. Our findings suggest that nitrogen cycling and transport will intensify during anthropogenic climate forcing, thereby affecting the timing and magnitude of annual stream nutrient loadings in northern forests of the USA.

  15. Predicted responses of arctic and alpine ecosystems to altered seasonality under climate change.

    PubMed

    Ernakovich, Jessica G; Hopping, Kelly A; Berdanier, Aaron B; Simpson, Rodney T; Kachergis, Emily J; Steltzer, Heidi; Wallenstein, Matthew D

    2014-10-01

    Global climate change is already having significant impacts on arctic and alpine ecosystems, and ongoing increases in temperature and altered precipitation patterns will affect the strong seasonal patterns that characterize these temperature-limited systems. The length of the potential growing season in these tundra environments is increasing due to warmer temperatures and earlier spring snow melt. Here, we compare current and projected climate and ecological data from 20 Northern Hemisphere sites to identify how seasonal changes in the physical environment due to climate change will alter the seasonality of arctic and alpine ecosystems. We find that although arctic and alpine ecosystems appear similar under historical climate conditions, climate change will lead to divergent responses, particularly in the spring and fall shoulder seasons. As seasonality changes in the Arctic, plants will advance the timing of spring phenological events, which could increase plant nutrient uptake, production, and ecosystem carbon (C) gain. In alpine regions, photoperiod will constrain spring plant phenology, limiting the extent to which the growing season can lengthen, especially if decreased water availability from earlier snow melt and warmer summer temperatures lead to earlier senescence. The result could be a shorter growing season with decreased production and increased nutrient loss. These contrasting alpine and arctic ecosystem responses will have cascading effects on ecosystems, affecting community structure, biotic interactions, and biogeochemistry.

  16. Climate Sensitivity Runs and Regional Hydrologic Modeling for Predicting the Response of the Greater Florida Everglades Ecosystem to Climate Change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Obeysekera, Jayantha; Barnes, Jenifer; Nungesser, Martha

    2015-04-01

    It is important to understand the vulnerability of the water management system in south Florida and to determine the resilience and robustness of greater Everglades restoration plans under future climate change. The current climate models, at both global and regional scales, are not ready to deliver specific climatic datasets for water resources investigations involving future plans and therefore a scenario based approach was adopted for this first study in restoration planning. We focused on the general implications of potential changes in future temperature and associated changes in evapotranspiration, precipitation, and sea levels at the regional boundary. From these, we developed a set of six climate and sea level scenarios, used them to simulate the hydrologic response of the greater Everglades region including agricultural, urban, and natural areas, and compared the results to those from a base run of current conditions. The scenarios included a 1.5 °C increase in temperature, ±10 % change in precipitation, and a 0.46 m (1.5 feet) increase in sea level for the 50-year planning horizon. The results suggested that, depending on the rainfall and temperature scenario, there would be significant changes in water budgets, ecosystem performance, and in water supply demands met. The increased sea level scenarios also show that the ground water levels would increase significantly with associated implications for flood protection in the urbanized areas of southeastern Florida.

  17. Climate sensitivity runs and regional hydrologic modeling for predicting the response of the greater Florida Everglades ecosystem to climate change.

    PubMed

    Obeysekera, Jayantha; Barnes, Jenifer; Nungesser, Martha

    2015-04-01

    It is important to understand the vulnerability of the water management system in south Florida and to determine the resilience and robustness of greater Everglades restoration plans under future climate change. The current climate models, at both global and regional scales, are not ready to deliver specific climatic datasets for water resources investigations involving future plans and therefore a scenario based approach was adopted for this first study in restoration planning. We focused on the general implications of potential changes in future temperature and associated changes in evapotranspiration, precipitation, and sea levels at the regional boundary. From these, we developed a set of six climate and sea level scenarios, used them to simulate the hydrologic response of the greater Everglades region including agricultural, urban, and natural areas, and compared the results to those from a base run of current conditions. The scenarios included a 1.5 °C increase in temperature, ±10 % change in precipitation, and a 0.46 m (1.5 feet) increase in sea level for the 50-year planning horizon. The results suggested that, depending on the rainfall and temperature scenario, there would be significant changes in water budgets, ecosystem performance, and in water supply demands met. The increased sea level scenarios also show that the ground water levels would increase significantly with associated implications for flood protection in the urbanized areas of southeastern Florida.

  18. Evolutionary response of the egg hatching date of a herbivorous insect under climate change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    van Asch, Margriet; Salis, Lucia; Holleman, Leonard J. M.; van Lith, Bart; Visser, Marcel E.

    2013-03-01

    Under changing climatic conditions, species need to adapt to their new environment. Genetic adaptation is crucial to prevent population extinction but examples where climate change leads to genetic changes in wild populations have been few. The synchronization between the timing of egg hatching of a herbivorous insect, the winter moth (Operophtera brumata), and the seasonal bud burst of its food plant, oak (Quercus robur), has been disrupted by climate change and a quantitative genetic model predicts that selection will delay the egg hatching date. Here we show, using both long-term observational data and experiments, that the egg hatching date has changed genetically, resulting in closer synchrony with oak bud burst. The observed rate of change matches the predicted rate of change of one day per year. Hence, altered selection pressures, caused by environmental change, result in a rapid adaptive response in insect phenology. These genetic changes in a key life-history trait in this herbivorous insect therefore seem to be fast enough to match the climate-change-induced advancement of their host phenology.

  19. Plant response to climate change varies with topography, interactions with neighbors, and ecotype.

    PubMed

    Liancourt, Pierre; Spence, Laura A; Song, Daniel S; Lkhagva, Ariuntsetseg; Sharkhuu, Anarmaa; Boldgiv, Bazartseren; Helliker, Brent R; Petraitis, Peter S; Casper, Brenda B

    2013-02-01

    Predicting the future of any given species represents an unprecedented challenge in light of the many environmental and biological factors that affect organismal performance and that also interact with drivers of global change. In a three-year experiment set in the Mongolian steppe, we examined the response of the common grass Festuca lenensis to manipulated temperature and water while controlling for topographic variation, plant-plant interactions, and ecotypic differentiation. Plant survival and growth responses to a warmer, drier climate varied within the landscape. Response to simulated increased precipitation occurred only in the absence of neighbors, demonstrating that plant-plant interactions can supersede the effects of climate change. F. lenensis also showed evidence of local adaptation in populations that were only 300 m apart. Individuals from the steep and dry upper slope showed a higher stress/drought tolerance, whereas those from the more productive lower slope showed a higher biomass production and a greater ability to cope with competition. Moreover, the response of this species to increased precipitation was ecotype specific, with water addition benefiting only the least stress-tolerant ecotype from the lower slope origin. This multifaceted approach illustrates the importance of placing climate change experiments within a realistic ecological and evolutionary framework. Existing sources of variation impacting plant performance may buffer or obscure climate change effects.

  20. Decreasing litter size of marmots over time: a life history response to climate change?

    PubMed

    Tafani, Marion; Cohas, Aurélie; Bonenfant, Christophe; Gaillard, Jean-Michel; Allainé, Dominique

    2013-03-01

    The way that plants and animals respond to climate change varies widely among species, but the biological features underlying their actual response remains largely unknown. Here, from a 20-year monitoring study, we document a continuous decrease in litter size of the Alpine marmot (Marmota marmota) since 1990. To cope with harsh winters, Alpine marmots hibernate in burrows and their reproductive output should depend more on spring conditions compared to animals that are active year-round. However, we show that litter size decreased over time because of the general thinning of winter snow cover that has been repeatedly reported to occur in the Alps over the same period, despite a positive effect of an earlier snowmelt in spring. Our results contrast markedly with a recent study on North American yellow-bellied marmots, suggesting that between-species differences in life histories can lead to opposite responses to climate change, even between closely related species. Our case study therefore demonstrates the idiosyncratic nature of the response to climate change and emphasizes, even for related species with similar ecological niches, that it may be hazardous to extrapolate life history responses to climate change from one species to another.

  1. An Investigation of Science Educators' View of Roles and Responsibilities for Climate Change Education

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    McGinnis, J. Randy; McDonald, Chris; Hestness, Emily; Breslyn, Wayne

    2016-01-01

    This exploratory study investigates what science educators from differing groups (outside of higher education--informal and formal (K-12) and inside of higher education--content and pedagogy experts) believe are the roles and responsibilities (and what actions these might involve) in climate change education for: 1) their group of educators, and…

  2. Genetic response to rapid climate change: it's seasonal timing that matters.

    PubMed

    Bradshaw, W E; Holzapfel, C M

    2008-01-01

    The primary nonbiological result of recent rapid climate change is warming winter temperatures, particularly at northern latitudes, leading to longer growing seasons and new seasonal exigencies and opportunities. Biological responses reflect selection due to the earlier arrival of spring, the later arrival of fall, or the increasing length of the growing season. Animals from rotifers to rodents use the high reliability of day length to time the seasonal transitions in their life histories that are crucial to fitness in temperate and polar environments: when to begin developing in the spring, when to reproduce, when to enter dormancy or when to migrate, thereby exploiting favourable temperatures and avoiding unfavourable temperatures. In documented cases of evolutionary (genetic) response to recent, rapid climate change, the role of day length (photoperiodism) ranges from causal to inhibitory; in no case has there been demonstrated a genetic shift in thermal optima or thermal tolerance. More effort should be made to explore the role of photoperiodism in genetic responses to climate change and to rule out the role of photoperiod in the timing of seasonal life histories before thermal adaptation is assumed to be the major evolutionary response to climate change.

  3. Response of grassland biomass production to simulated climate change and clipping along an elevation gradient.

    PubMed

    Carlyle, Cameron N; Fraser, Lauchlan H; Turkington, Roy

    2014-03-01

    Changes in rainfall and temperature regimes are altering plant productivity in grasslands worldwide, and these climate change factors are likely to interact with grassland disturbances, particularly grazing. Understanding how plant production responds to both climate change and defoliation, and how this response varies among grassland types, is important for the long-term sustainability of grasslands. For 4 years, we manipulated temperature [ambient and increased using open-top chambers (OTC)], water (ambient, reduced using rainout shelters and increased using hand watering) and defoliation (clipped, and unclipped) in three grassland types along an elevation gradient. We monitored plant cover and biomass and found that OTC reduced biomass by 15%, but clipping and water treatments interacted with each other and their effects varied in different grassland types. For example, total biomass did not decline in the higher elevation grasslands due to clipping, and water addition mitigated the effects of clipping on subordinate grasses in the lower grasslands. The response of total biomass was driven by dominant plant species while subordinate grasses and forbs showed more variable responses. Overall, our results demonstrate that biomass in the highest elevation grassland was least effected by the treatments and the response of biomass tended to be dependent on interactions between climate change treatments and defoliation. Together, the results suggest that ecosystem function of these grasslands under altered climate patterns will be dependent on site-specific management.

  4. Response of vegetation distribution, ecosystem productivity, and fire to climate change scenarios for California

    Treesearch

    James M. Lenihan; Dominique Bachelet; Ronald P. Neilson; Raymond. Drapeck

    2008-01-01

    The response of vegetation distribution, carbon, and fire to three scenarios of future climate change was simulated for California using the MC1 Dynamic General Vegetation Model. Under all three scenarios, Alpine/Subalpine Forest cover declined, and increases in the productivity of evergreen hardwoods led to the displacement of Evergreen Conifer Forest by Mixed...

  5. Complex life cycles and the responses of insects to climate change.

    PubMed

    Kingsolver, Joel G; Woods, H Arthur; Buckley, Lauren B; Potter, Kristen A; MacLean, Heidi J; Higgins, Jessica K

    2011-11-01

    Many organisms have complex life cycles with distinct life stages that experience different environmental conditions. How does the complexity of life cycles affect the ecological and evolutionary responses of organisms to climate change? We address this question by exploring several recent case studies and synthetic analyses of insects. First, different life stages may inhabit different microhabitats, and may differ in their thermal sensitivities and other traits that are important for responses to climate. For example, the life stages of Manduca experience different patterns of thermal and hydric variability, and differ in tolerance to high temperatures. Second, life stages may differ in their mechanisms for adaptation to local climatic conditions. For example, in Colias, larvae in different geographic populations and species adapt to local climate via differences in optimal and maximal temperatures for feeding and growth, whereas adults adapt via differences in melanin of the wings and in other morphological traits. Third, we extend a recent analysis of the temperature-dependence of insect population growth to demonstrate how changes in temperature can differently impact juvenile survival and adult reproduction. In both temperate and tropical regions, high rates of adult reproduction in a given environment may not be realized if occasional, high temperatures prevent survival to maturity. This suggests that considering the differing responses of multiple life stages is essential to understand the ecological and evolutionary consequences of climate change. © The Author 2011. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society for Integrative and Comparative Biology. All rights reserved.

  6. Elevation-dependent responses of tree mast seeding to climate change over 45 years

    PubMed Central

    Allen, Robert B; Hurst, Jennifer M; Portier, Jeanne; Richardson, Sarah J

    2014-01-01

    We use seed count data from a New Zealand mono-specific mountain beech forest to test for decadal trends in seed production along an elevation gradient in relation to changes in climate. Seedfall was collected (1965 to 2009) from seed trays located on transect lines at fixed elevations along an elevation gradient (1020 to 1370 m). We counted the number of seeds in the catch of each tray, for each year, and determined the number of viable seeds. Climate variables were obtained from a nearby (<2 km) climate station (914-m elevation). Variables were the sum or mean of daily measurements, using periods within each year known to correlate with subsequent interannual variation in seed production. To determine trends in mean seed production, at each elevation, and climate variables, we used generalized least squares (GLS) regression. We demonstrate a trend of increasing total and viable seed production, particularly at higher elevations, which emerged from marked interannual variation. Significant changes in four seasonal climate variables had GLS regression coefficients consistent with predictions of increased seed production. These variables subsumed the effect of year in GLS regressions with a greater influence on seed production with increasing elevation. Regression models enforce a view that the sequence of climate variables was additive in their influence on seed production throughout a reproductive cycle spanning more than 2 years and including three summers. Models with the most support always included summer precipitation as the earliest variable in the sequence followed by summer maximum daily temperatures. We interpret this as reflecting precipitation driven increases in soil nutrient availability enhancing seed production at higher elevations rather than the direct effects of climate, stand development or rising atmospheric CO2 partial pressures. Greater sensitivity of tree seeding at higher elevations to changes in climate reveals how ecosystem responses to

  7. Elevation-dependent responses of tree mast seeding to climate change over 45 years.

    PubMed

    Allen, Robert B; Hurst, Jennifer M; Portier, Jeanne; Richardson, Sarah J

    2014-09-01

    We use seed count data from a New Zealand mono-specific mountain beech forest to test for decadal trends in seed production along an elevation gradient in relation to changes in climate. Seedfall was collected (1965 to 2009) from seed trays located on transect lines at fixed elevations along an elevation gradient (1020 to 1370 m). We counted the number of seeds in the catch of each tray, for each year, and determined the number of viable seeds. Climate variables were obtained from a nearby (<2 km) climate station (914-m elevation). Variables were the sum or mean of daily measurements, using periods within each year known to correlate with subsequent interannual variation in seed production. To determine trends in mean seed production, at each elevation, and climate variables, we used generalized least squares (GLS) regression. We demonstrate a trend of increasing total and viable seed production, particularly at higher elevations, which emerged from marked interannual variation. Significant changes in four seasonal climate variables had GLS regression coefficients consistent with predictions of increased seed production. These variables subsumed the effect of year in GLS regressions with a greater influence on seed production with increasing elevation. Regression models enforce a view that the sequence of climate variables was additive in their influence on seed production throughout a reproductive cycle spanning more than 2 years and including three summers. Models with the most support always included summer precipitation as the earliest variable in the sequence followed by summer maximum daily temperatures. We interpret this as reflecting precipitation driven increases in soil nutrient availability enhancing seed production at higher elevations rather than the direct effects of climate, stand development or rising atmospheric CO2 partial pressures. Greater sensitivity of tree seeding at higher elevations to changes in climate reveals how ecosystem responses to

  8. Effects of local adaptation and interspecific competition on species' responses to climate change.

    PubMed

    Bocedi, Greta; Atkins, Katherine E; Liao, Jishan; Henry, Roslyn C; Travis, Justin M J; Hellmann, Jessica J

    2013-09-01

    Local adaptation and species interactions have been shown to affect geographic ranges; therefore, we need models of climate impact that include both factors. To identify possible dynamics of species when including these factors, we ran simulations of two competing species using an individual-based, coupled map-lattice model using a linear climatic gradient that varies across latitude and is warmed over time. Reproductive success is governed by an individual's adaptation to local climate as well as its location relative to global constraints. In exploratory experiments varying the strength of adaptation and competition, competition reduces genetic diversity and slows range change, although the two species can coexist in the absence of climate change and shift in the absence of competitors. We also found that one species can drive the other to extinction, sometimes long after climate change ends. Weak selection on local adaptation and poor dispersal ability also caused surfing of cooler-adapted phenotypes from the expanding margin backwards, causing loss of warmer-adapted phenotypes. Finally, geographic ranges can become disjointed, losing centrally-adapted genotypes. These initial results suggest that the interplay between local adaptation and interspecific competition can significantly influence species' responses to climate change, in a way that demands future research. © 2013 New York Academy of Sciences.

  9. Uncertainty of the hydrological response to climate change conditions; 605 basins, 3 hydrological models, 5 climate models, 5 hydrological variables

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Melsen, Lieke; Mizukami, Naoki; Newman, Andrew; Clark, Martyn; Teuling, Adriaan

    2016-04-01

    Many studies investigated the effect of a changing climate on the hydrological response of a catchment and uncertainty of the effect coming from hydrologic modelling (e.g., forcing, hydrologic model structures, and parameters). However, most past studies used only a single or a small number of catchments. To go beyond the case-study, and to assess the uncertainty involved in modelling the hydrological impact of climate change more comprehensively, we studied 605 basins over a wide range of climate regimes throughout the contiguous USA. We used three different widely-used hydrological models (VIC, HBV, SAC), which we forced with five distinct climate model outputs. The hydrological models have been run for a base period (1986-2008) for which observations were available, and for a future period (2070-2099). Instead of calibrating each hydrological model for each basin, the model has been run with a parameter sample (varying from 1600 to 1900 samples dependent on the number of free parameters in the model). Five hydrological states and fluxes were stored; discharge, evapotranspiration, soil moisture, SWE and snow melt, and 15 different metrics and signatures have been obtained for each model run. With the results, we conduct a sensitivity analysis over the change in signatures from the future period compared to the base period. In this way, we can identify the parameters that are responsible for certain projected changes, and identify the processes responsible for this change. By using three different models, in which VIC is most distinctive in including explicit vegetation parameters, we can compare different process representations and the effect on the projected hydrological change.

  10. Global climatic change

    SciTech Connect

    Houghton, R.A.; Woodwell, G.M.

    1989-04-01

    This paper reviews the climatic effects of trace gases such as carbon dioxide and methane. It discusses the expected changes from the increases in trace gases and the extent to which the expected changes can be found in the climate record and in the retreat of glaciers. The use of ice cores in correlating atmospheric composition and climate is discussed. The response of terrestrial ecosystems as a biotic feedback is discussed. Possible responses are discussed, including reduction in fossil-fuel use, controls on deforestation, and reforestation. International aspects, such as the implications for developing nations, are addressed.

  11. Climate change as a three-part ethical problem: a response to Jamieson and Gardiner.

    PubMed

    Kingston, Ewan

    2014-12-01

    Dale Jamieson has claimed that conventional human-directed ethical concepts are an inadequate means for accurately understanding our duty to respond to climate change. Furthermore, he suggests that a responsibility to respect nature can instead provide the appropriate framework with which to understand such a duty. Stephen Gardiner has responded by claiming that climate change is a clear case of ethical responsibility, but the failure of institutions to respond to it creates a (not unprecedented) political problem. In assessing the debate between Gardiner and Jamieson, I develop an analysis which shows a three-part structure to the problem of climate change, in which the problem Gardiner identifies is only one of three sub-problems of climate change. This analysis highlights difficulties with Jamieson's argument that the duty of respect for nature is necessary for a full understanding of climate ethics, and suggests how a human-directed approach based on the three-part analysis can avoid Jamieson's charge of inadequacy.

  12. Soil respiration response to climate change in Pacific Northwest prairies is mediated by a regional Mediterranean climate gradient.

    PubMed

    Reynolds, Lorien L; Johnson, Bart R; Pfeifer-Meister, Laurel; Bridgham, Scott D

    2015-01-01

    Soil respiration is expected to increase with rising global temperatures but the degree of response may depend on soil moisture and other local factors. Experimental climate change studies from single sites cannot discern whether an observed response is site-dependent or generalizable. To deconvolve site-specific vs. regional climatic controls, we examined soil respiration for 18 months along a 520 km climate gradient in three Pacific Northwest, USA prairies that represents increasingly severe Mediterranean conditions from north to south. At each site we implemented a fully factorial combination of 2.5-3 °C warming and 20% added precipitation intensity. The response of soil respiration to warming was driven primarily by the latitudinal climate gradient and not site-specific factors. Warming increased respiration at all sites during months when soil moisture was not limiting. However, these gains were offset by reductions in respiration during seasonal transitions and summer drought due to lengthened periods of soil moisture limitation. The degree of this offset varied along the north-south climate gradient such that in 2011 warming increased cumulative annual soil respiration 28.6% in the northern site, 13.5% in the central site, and not at all in the southern site. Precipitation also stimulated soil respiration more frequently in the south, consistent with an increased duration of moisture limitation. The best predictors of soil respiration in nonlinear models were the Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI), antecedent soil moisture, and temperature but these models provided biased results at high and low soil respiration. NDVI was an effective integrator of climate and site differences in plant productivity in terms of their combined effects on soil respiration. Our results suggest that soil moisture limitation can offset the effect of warming on soil respiration, and that greater growing-season moisture limitation would constrain cumulative annual

  13. Watershed scale response to climate change--Yampa River Basin, Colorado

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hay, Lauren E.; Battaglin, William A.; Markstrom, Steven L.

    2012-01-01

    General Circulation Model simulations of future climate through 2099 project a wide range of possible scenarios. To determine the sensitivity and potential effect of long-term climate change on the freshwater resources of the United States, the U.S. Geological Survey Global Change study, "An integrated watershed scale response to global change in selected basins across the United States" was started in 2008. The long-term goal of this national study is to provide the foundation for hydrologically based climate change studies across the nation. Fourteen basins for which the Precipitation Runoff Modeling System has been calibrated and evaluated were selected as study sites. Precipitation Runoff Modeling System is a deterministic, distributed parameter watershed model developed to evaluate the effects of various combinations of precipitation, temperature, and land use on streamflow and general basin hydrology. Output from five General Circulation Model simulations and four emission scenarios were used to develop an ensemble of climate-change scenarios for each basin. These ensembles were simulated with the corresponding Precipitation Runoff Modeling System model. This fact sheet summarizes the hydrologic effect and sensitivity of the Precipitation Runoff Modeling System simulations to climate change for the Yampa River Basin at Steamboat Springs, Colorado.

  14. Unexpected patterns of vegetation distribution response and climate change velocities in cold ecosystems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Macias-Fauria, M.; Johnson, E. A.; Forbes, B. C.; Willis, K. J.

    2013-12-01

    In cold ecosystems such as sub-alpine forests and forest-tundra, vegetation geographical ranges are expected to expand upward/northward in a warmer world. Such moving fronts have been predicted to 1) decrease the remaining alpine area in mountain systems, increasing fragmentation and extinction risk of many alpine taxa, and 2) fundamentally modify the energy budget of newly afforested areas, enhancing further regional warming due to a reduction in albedo. The latter is particularly significant in the forest-tundra, where changes over large regions can have regional-to-global effects on climate. An integral part of the expected range shifts is their velocity. Whereas range shifts across thermal gradients can theoretically be fast in an elevation gradient relative to climate velocity (i.e. rate of climate change) due to the short distances involved, large lags are expected over the flat forest-tundra. Mountain regions have thus been identified as buffer areas where species can track climate change, in opposition to flat terrain where climate velocity is faster. Thus, much shorter time-to-equilibrium are expected for advancing upslope sub-alpine forest than for advancing northern boreal forest. We contribute to this discussion by showing two mechanisms that might largely alter the above predictions in opposite directions: 1) In mountain regions, terrain heterogeneity not only allows for slower climate velocities, but slope processes largely affect the advance of vegetation. Indeed, such mechanisms can potentially reduce the climatic signal in vegetation distribution limits (e.g. treeline), precluding it from migrating to climatically favourable areas - since these areas occur in geologically unfavourable ones. Such seemingly local control to species range shifts was found to reduce the climate-sensitive treeline areas in the sub-alpine forest of the Canadian Rocky Mountains to ~5% at a landscape scale, fundamentally altering the predictions of vegetation response to

  15. Dynamic response of land use and river nutrient concentration to long-term climatic changes.

    PubMed

    Bussi, Gianbattista; Janes, Victoria; Whitehead, Paul G; Dadson, Simon J; Holman, Ian P

    2017-07-15

    The combined indirect and direct impacts of land use change and climate change on river water quality were assessed. A land use allocation model was used to evaluate the response of the catchment land use to long-term climatic changes. Its results were used to drive a water quality model and assess the impact of climatic alterations on freshwater nitrate and phosphorus concentrations. Climatic projections were employed to estimate the likelihood of such response. The River Thames catchment (UK) was used as a case-study. If land use is considered as static parameter, according to the model results, climate change alone should reduce the average nitrate concentration, although just by a small amount, by the 2050s in the Lower Thames, due to reduced runoff (and lower export of nitrate from agricultural soils) and increased instream denitrification, and should increase the average phosphorus concentration by 12% by the 2050s in the Lower Thames, due to a reduction of the effluent dilution capacity of the river flow. However, the results of this study also show that these long-term climatic alterations are likely to lead to a reduction in the arable land in the Thames, replaced by improved grassland, due to a decrease in agriculture profitability in the UK. Taking into account the dynamic co-evolution of land use with climate, the average nitrate concentration is expected to be decreased by around 6% by the 2050s in both the upper and the lower Thames, following the model results, and the average phosphorus concentration increased by 13% in the upper Thames and 5% in the lower Thames. On the long term (2080s), nitrate is expected to decrease by 9% and 8% (upper and lower Thames respectively) and phosphorus not to change in the upper thames and increase by 5% in the lower Thames.

  16. Limited hydrologic response to Pleistocene climate change in deep vadose zones - Yucca Mountain, Nevada

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Paces, J.B.; Neymark, L.A.; Whelan, J.F.; Wooden, J.L.; Lund, S.P.; Marshall, B.D.

    2010-01-01

    Understanding the movement of water through thick vadose zones, especially on time scales encompassing long-term climate change, is increasingly important as societies utilize semi-arid environments for both water resources and sites viewed as favorable for long-term disposal or storage of hazardous waste. Hydrologic responses to Pleistocene climate change within a deep vadose zone in the eastern Mojave Desert at Yucca Mountain, Nevada, were evaluated by uranium-series dating of finely layered hyalitic opal using secondary ion mass spectrometry. Opal is present within cm-thick secondary hydrogenic mineral crusts coating floors of lithophysal cavities in fractured volcanic rocks at depths of 200 to 300 m below land surface. Uranium concentrations in opal fluctuate systematically between 5 and 550 μg/g. Age-calibrated profiles of uranium concentration correlate with regional climate records over the last 300,000 years and produce time-series spectral peaks that have distinct periodicities of 100- and 41-ka, consistent with planetary orbital parameters. These results indicate that the chemical compositions of percolating solutions varied in response to near-surface, climate-driven processes. However, slow (micrometers per thousand years), relatively uniform growth rates of secondary opal and calcite deposition spanning several glacial–interglacial climate cycles imply that water fluxes in the deep vadose zone remained low and generally buffered from the large fluctuations in available surface moisture during different climates.

  17. Limited hydrologic response to Pleistocene climate change in deep vadose zones — Yucca Mountain, Nevada

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Paces, James B.; Neymark, Leonid A.; Whelan, Joseph F.; Wooden, Joseph L.; Lund, Steven P.; Marshall, Brian D.

    2010-12-01

    Understanding the movement of water through thick vadose zones, especially on time scales encompassing long-term climate change, is increasingly important as societies utilize semi-arid environments for both water resources and sites viewed as favorable for long-term disposal or storage of hazardous waste. Hydrologic responses to Pleistocene climate change within a deep vadose zone in the eastern Mojave Desert at Yucca Mountain, Nevada, were evaluated by uranium-series dating of finely layered hyalitic opal using secondary ion mass spectrometry. Opal is present within cm-thick secondary hydrogenic mineral crusts coating floors of lithophysal cavities in fractured volcanic rocks at depths of 200 to 300 m below land surface. Uranium concentrations in opal fluctuate systematically between 5 and 550 μg/g. Age-calibrated profiles of uranium concentration correlate with regional climate records over the last 300,000 years and produce time-series spectral peaks that have distinct periodicities of 100- and 41-ka, consistent with planetary orbital parameters. These results indicate that the chemical compositions of percolating solutions varied in response to near-surface, climate-driven processes. However, slow (micrometers per thousand years), relatively uniform growth rates of secondary opal and calcite deposition spanning several glacial-interglacial climate cycles imply that water fluxes in the deep vadose zone remained low and generally buffered from the large fluctuations in available surface moisture during different climates.

  18. Change in atmospheric mineral aerosols in response to climate: Last glacial period, preindustrial, modern, and doubled carbon dioxide climates

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Mahowald, N.M.; Muhs, D.R.; Levis, S.; Rasch, P.J.; Yoshioka, M.; Zender, C.S.; Luo, C.

    2006-01-01

    Desert dust simulations generated by the National Center for Atmospheric Research's Community Climate System Model for the current climate are shown to be consistent with present day satellite and deposition data. The response of the dust cycle to last glacial maximum, preindustrial, modern, and doubled-carbon dioxide climates is analyzed. Only natural (non-land use related) dust sources are included in this simulation. Similar to some previous studies, dust production mainly responds to changes in the source areas from vegetation changes, not from winds or soil moisture changes alone. This model simulates a +92%, +33%, and -60% change in dust loading for the last glacial maximum, preindustrial, and doubled-carbon dioxide climate, respectively, when impacts of carbon dioxide fertilization on vegetation are included in the model. Terrestrial sediment records from the last glacial maximum compiled here indicate a large underestimate of deposition in continental regions, probably due to the lack of simulation of glaciogenic dust sources. In order to include the glaciogenic dust sources as a first approximation, we designate the location of these sources, and infer the size of the sources using an inversion method that best matches the available data. The inclusion of these inferred glaciogenic dust sources increases our dust flux in the last glacial maximum from 2.1 to 3.3 times current deposition. Copyright 2006 by the American Geophysical Union.

  19. The dependence of wintertime Mediterranean precipitation on the atmospheric circulation response to climate change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zappa, Giuseppe; Hoskins, Brian; Shepherd, Ted

    2016-04-01

    Climate models indicate a future wintertime precipitation reduction in the Mediterranean region which may have large socio-economic impacts. However, there is large uncertainty in the amplitude of the projected precipitation reduction and this limits the possibility to inform effective adaptation planning. We analyse CMIP5 climate model output to quantify the role of atmospheric circulation in the precipitation change and the time of emergence of the Mediterranean precipitation response. It is found that a simple circulation index, i.e. the 850 hPa zonal wind (U850) in North Africa, well describes the year to year fluctuations in the area-averaged Mediterranean precipitation, with positive (i.e. westerly) U850 anomalies in North Africa being associated with positive precipitation anomalies. Under climate change, U850 in North Africa and the Mediterranean precipitation are both projected to decrease consistently with the relationship found in the inter-annual variability. This enables us to estimate that about 85% of the CMIP5 mean precipitation response and 80% of the variance in the inter-model spread are related to changes in the atmospheric circulation. In contrast, there is no significant correlation between the mean precipitation response and the global-mean surface warming across the models. We also find that the precipitation response to climate change might already emerge from internal variability by 2025 relative to 1960-1990 according to the climate models with a large circulation response. This implies that it might soon be possible to test model projections using observations. Finally, some of the mechanisms which are important for the Mediterranean circulation response in the CMIP5 models are discussed.

  20. Catchment Sensitivity to Changing Climate Conditions: Does the Landscape Control Hydrological Responses?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Quesada Montano, B.; Teutschbein, C.; Grabs, T.; Karlsen, R.; Laudon, H.; Bishop, K. H.

    2015-12-01

    It has long been recognized that streamflow-generating processes are not only dependent on climatic conditions, but also affected by physical catchment properties such as topography, geology, soils and land cover. We hypothesize that these landscape characteristics do not only lead to highly variable hydrologic behavior of rather similar catchments under the same stationary climate conditions, but that they also play a fundamental role for the sensitivity of a catchment to a changing climate. A multi-model ensemble based on 15 regional climate models was combined with a multi-catchment approach to explore the hydrologic sensitivity of 14 partially nested and rather similar catchments in Northern Sweden to changing climate conditions and the importance of small-scale spatial variability. Current (1981-2010) and future (2061-2090) streamflow was simulated with the HBV model. As expected, projected increases in temperature and precipitation resulted in increased total available streamflow, with lower spring and summer flows, but substantially higher winter streamflow. Furthermore, significant changes in flow durations with lower chances of both high and low flows can be expected in boreal Sweden in the future. This overall trend in projected streamflow pattern changes was comparable among the analyzed catchments while the magnitude of change differed considerably. This suggests that catchments belonging to the same region can show distinctly different degrees of hydrological responses to the same external climate change signal. We reason that differences in spatially distributed physical catchment properties at smaller scales are not only of great importance for current streamflow behavior, but also play a major role as first-order control for the sensitivity of catchments to changing climate conditions.

  1. Quantifying the hydrological responses to climate change in an intact forested small watershed in southern China

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Zhou, Guo-Yi; Wei, Xiaohua; Wu, Yiping; Liu, Shu-Guang; Huang, Yuhui; Yan, Junhua; Zhang, Deqiang; Zhang, Qianmei; Liu, Juxiu; Meng, Ze; Wang, Chunlin; Chu, Guowei; Liu, Shizhong; Tang, Xu-Li; Liu, Xiaodong

    2011-01-01

    Responses of hydrological processes to climate change are key components in the Intergovernmental Panel for Climate Change (IPCC) assessment. Understanding these responses is critical for developing appropriate mitigation and adaptation strategies for sustainable water resources management and protection of public safety. However, these responses are not well understood and little long-term evidence exists. Herein, we show how climate change, specifically increased air temperature and storm intensity, can affect soil moisture dynamics and hydrological variables based on both long-term observation and model simulations using the Soil and Water Assessment Tool (SWAT) in an intact forested watershed (the Dinghushan Biosphere Reserve) in Southern China. Our results show that, although total annual precipitation changed little from 1950 to 2009, soil moisture decreased significantly. A significant decline was also found in the monthly 7-day low flow from 2000 to 2009. However, the maximum daily streamflow in the wet season and unconfined groundwater tables have significantly increased during the same 10-year period. The significant decreasing trends on soil moisture and low flow variables suggest that the study watershed is moving towards drought-like condition. Our analysis indicates that the intensification of rainfall storms and the increasing number of annual no-rain days were responsible for the increasing chance of both droughts and floods. We conclude that climate change has indeed induced more extreme hydrological events (e.g. droughts and floods) in this watershed and perhaps other areas of Southern China. This study also demonstrated usefulness of our research methodology and its possible applications on quantifying the impacts of climate change on hydrology in any other watersheds where long-term data are available and human disturbance is negligible.

  2. Quantifying the hydrological responses to climate change in an intact forested small watershed in Southern China

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Zhou, G.; Wei, X.; Wu, Y.; Huang, Y.; Yan, J.; Zhang, Dongxiao; Zhang, Q.; Liu, J.; Meng, Z.; Wang, C.; Chu, G.; Liu, S.; Tang, X.; Liu, Xiuying

    2011-01-01

    Responses of hydrological processes to climate change are key components in the Intergovernmental Panel for Climate Change (IPCC) assessment. Understanding these responses is critical for developing appropriate mitigation and adaptation strategies for sustainable water resources management and protection of public safety. However, these responses are not well understood and little long-term evidence exists. Herein, we show how climate change, specifically increased air temperature and storm intensity, can affect soil moisture dynamics and hydrological variables based on both long-term observation and model simulations using the Soil and Water Assessment Tool (SWAT) in an intact forested watershed (the Dinghushan Biosphere Reserve) in Southern China. Our results show that, although total annual precipitation changed little from 1950 to 2009, soil moisture decreased significantly. A significant decline was also found in the monthly 7-day low flow from 2000 to 2009. However, the maximum daily streamflow in the wet season and unconfined groundwater tables have significantly increased during the same 10-year period. The significant decreasing trends on soil moisture and low flow variables suggest that the study watershed is moving towards drought-like condition. Our analysis indicates that the intensification of rainfall storms and the increasing number of annual no-rain days were responsible for the increasing chance of both droughts and floods. We conclude that climate change has indeed induced more extreme hydrological events (e.g. droughts and floods) in this watershed and perhaps other areas of Southern China. This study also demonstrated usefulness of our research methodology and its possible applications on quantifying the impacts of climate change on hydrology in any other watersheds where long-term data are available and human disturbance is negligible. ?? 2011 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

  3. Consistent response of vegetation dynamics to recent climate change in tropical mountain regions.

    PubMed

    Krishnaswamy, Jagdish; John, Robert; Joseph, Shijo

    2014-01-01

    Global climate change has emerged as a major driver of ecosystem change. Here, we present evidence for globally consistent responses in vegetation dynamics to recent climate change in the world's mountain ecosystems located in the pan-tropical belt (30°N-30°S). We analyzed decadal-scale trends and seasonal cycles of vegetation greenness using monthly time series of satellite greenness (Normalized Difference Vegetation Index) and climate data for the period 1982-2006 for 47 mountain protected areas in five biodiversity hotspots. The time series of annual maximum NDVI for each of five continental regions shows mild greening trends followed by reversal to stronger browning trends around the mid-1990s. During the same period we found increasing trends in temperature but only marginal change in precipitation. The amplitude of the annual greenness cycle increased with time, and was strongly associated with the observed increase in temperature amplitude. We applied dynamic models with time-dependent regression parameters to study the time evolution of NDVI-climate relationships. We found that the relationship between vegetation greenness and temperature weakened over time or was negative. Such loss of positive temperature sensitivity has been documented in other regions as a response to temperature-induced moisture stress. We also used dynamic models to extract the trends in vegetation greenness that remain after accounting for the effects of temperature and precipitation. We found residual browning and greening trends in all regions, which indicate that factors other than temperature and precipitation also influence vegetation dynamics. Browning rates became progressively weaker with increase in elevation as indicated by quantile regression models. Tropical mountain vegetation is considered sensitive to climatic changes, so these consistent vegetation responses across widespread regions indicate persistent global-scale effects of climate warming and associated moisture

  4. Modelling climate change responses in tropical forests: similar productivity estimates across five models, but different mechanisms and responses

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rowland, L.; Harper, A.; Christoffersen, B. O.; Galbraith, D. R.; Imbuzeiro, H. M. A.; Powell, T. L.; Doughty, C.; Levine, N. M.; Malhi, Y.; Saleska, S. R.; Moorcroft, P. R.; Meir, P.; Williams, M.

    2014-11-01

    Accurately predicting the response of Amazonia to climate change is important for predicting changes across the globe. However, changes in multiple climatic factors simultaneously may result in complex non-linear responses, which are difficult to predict using vegetation models. Using leaf and canopy scale observations, this study evaluated the capability of five vegetation models (CLM3.5, ED2, JULES, SiB3, and SPA) to simulate the responses of canopy and leaf scale productivity to changes in temperature and drought in an Amazonian forest. The models did not agree as to whether gross primary productivity (GPP) was more sensitive to changes in temperature or precipitation. There was greater model-data consistency in the response of net ecosystem exchange to changes in temperature, than in the response to temperature of leaf area index (LAI), net photosynthesis (An) and stomatal conductance (gs). Modelled canopy scale fluxes are calculated by scaling leaf scale fluxes to LAI, and therefore in this study similarities in modelled ecosystem scale responses to drought and temperature were the result of inconsistent leaf scale and LAI responses among models. Across the models, the response of An to temperature was more closely linked to stomatal behaviour than biochemical processes. Consequently all the models predicted that GPP would be higher if tropical forests were 5 °C colder, closer to the model optima for gs. There was however no model consistency in the response of the An-gs relationship when temperature changes and drought were introduced simultaneously. The inconsistencies in the An-gs relationships amongst models were caused by to non-linear model responses induced by simultaneous drought and temperature change. To improve the reliability of simulations of the response of Amazonian rainforest to climate change the mechanistic underpinnings of vegetation models need more complete validation to improve accuracy and consistency in the scaling of processes from

  5. Assessing Forest Carbon Response to Climate Change and Disturbances Using Long-term Hydro-climatic Observations and Simulations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Trettin, C.; Dai, Z.; Amatya, D. M.

    2014-12-01

    Long-term climatic and hydrologic observations on the Santee Experimental Forest in the lower coastal plain of South Carolina were used to estimate long-term changes in hydrology and forest carbon dynamics for a pair of first-order watersheds. Over 70 years of climate data indicated that warming in this forest area in the last decades was faster than the global mean; 35+ years of hydrologic records showed that forest ecosystem succession three years following Hurricane Hugo caused a substantial change in the ratio of runoff to precipitation. The change in this relationship between the paired watersheds was attributed to altered evapotranspiration processes caused by greater abundance of pine in the treatment watershed and regeneration of the mixed hardwood-pine forest on the reference watershed. The long-term records and anomalous observations are highly valuable for reliable calibration and validation of hydrological and biogeochemical models capturing the effects of climate variability. We applied the hydrological model MIKESHE that showed that runoff and water table level are sensitive to global warming, and that the sustained warming trends can be expected to decrease stream discharge and lower the mean water table depth. The spatially-explicit biogeochemical model Forest-DNDC, validated using biomass measurements from the watersheds, was used to assess carbon dynamics in response to high resolution hydrologic observation data and simulation results. The simulations showed that the long-term spatiotemporal carbon dynamics, including biomass and fluxes of soil carbon dioxide and methane were highly regulated by disturbance regimes, climatic conditions and water table depth. The utility of linked-modeling framework demonstrated here to assess biogeochemical responses at the watershed scale suggests applications for assessing the consequences of climate change within an urbanizing forested landscape. The approach may also be applicable for validating large

  6. Changing crops in response to climate: virtual Nang Rong, Thailand in an agent based simulation.

    PubMed

    Malanson, George P; Verdery, Ashton M; Walsh, Stephen J; Sawangdee, Yothin; Heumann, Benjamin W; McDaniel, Philip M; Frizzelle, Brian G; Williams, Nathalie E; Yao, Xiaozheng; Entwisle, Barbara; Rindfuss, Ronald R

    2014-09-01

    The effects of extended climatic variability on agricultural land use were explored for the type of system found in villages of northeastern Thailand. An agent based model developed for the Nang Rong district was used to simulate land allotted to jasmine rice, heavy rice, cassava, and sugar cane. The land use choices in the model depended on likely economic outcomes, but included elements of bounded rationality in dependence on household demography. The socioeconomic dynamics are endogenous in the system, and climate changes were added as exogenous drivers. Villages changed their agricultural effort in many different ways. Most villages reduced the amount of land under cultivation, primarily with reduction in jasmine rice, but others did not. The variation in responses to climate change indicates potential sensitivity to initial conditions and path dependence for this type of system. The differences between our virtual villages and the real villages of the region indicate effects of bounded rationality and limits on model applications.

  7. Changing crops in response to climate: virtual Nang Rong, Thailand in an agent based simulation

    PubMed Central

    Malanson, George P.; Verdery, Ashton M.; Walsh, Stephen J.; Sawangdee, Yothin; Heumann, Benjamin W.; McDaniel, Philip M.; Frizzelle, Brian G.; Williams, Nathalie E.; Yao, Xiaozheng; Entwisle, Barbara; Rindfuss, Ronald R.

    2014-01-01

    The effects of extended climatic variability on agricultural land use were explored for the type of system found in villages of northeastern Thailand. An agent based model developed for the Nang Rong district was used to simulate land allotted to jasmine rice, heavy rice, cassava, and sugar cane. The land use choices in the model depended on likely economic outcomes, but included elements of bounded rationality in dependence on household demography. The socioeconomic dynamics are endogenous in the system, and climate changes were added as exogenous drivers. Villages changed their agricultural effort in many different ways. Most villages reduced the amount of land under cultivation, primarily with reduction in jasmine rice, but others did not. The variation in responses to climate change indicates potential sensitivity to initial conditions and path dependence for this type of system. The differences between our virtual villages and the real villages of the region indicate effects of bounded rationality and limits on model applications. PMID:25061240

  8. What Is a Mild Winter? Regional Differences in Within-Species Responses to Climate Change

    PubMed Central

    Vetter, Sebastian G.; Ruf, Thomas; Bieber, Claudia; Arnold, Walter

    2015-01-01

    Climate change is known to affect ecosystems globally, but our knowledge of its impact on large and widespread mammals, and possibly population-specific responses is still sparse. We investigated large-scale and long-term effects of climate change on local population dynamics using the wild boar (Sus scrofa L.) as a model species. Our results show that population increases across Europe are strongly associated with increasingly mild winters, yet with region-specific threshold temperatures for the onset of exponential growth. Additionally, we found that abundant availability of critical food resources, e.g. beech nuts, can outweigh the negative effects of cold winters on population growth of wild boar. Availability of beech nuts is highly variable and highest in years of beech mast which increased in frequency since 1980, according to our data. We conclude that climate change drives population growth of wild boar directly by relaxing the negative effect of cold winters on survival and reproduction, and indirectly by increasing food availability. However, region-specific responses need to be considered in order to fully understand a species’ demographic response to climate change. PMID:26158846

  9. What Is a Mild Winter? Regional Differences in Within-Species Responses to Climate Change.

    PubMed

    Vetter, Sebastian G; Ruf, Thomas; Bieber, Claudia; Arnold, Walter

    2015-01-01

    Climate change is known to affect ecosystems globally, but our knowledge of its impact on large and widespread mammals, and possibly population-specific responses is still sparse. We investigated large-scale and long-term effects of climate change on local population dynamics using the wild boar (Sus scrofa L.) as a model species. Our results show that population increases across Europe are strongly associated with increasingly mild winters, yet with region-specific threshold temperatures for the onset of exponential growth. Additionally, we found that abundant availability of critical food resources, e.g. beech nuts, can outweigh the negative effects of cold winters on population growth of wild boar. Availability of beech nuts is highly variable and highest in years of beech mast which increased in frequency since 1980, according to our data. We conclude that climate change drives population growth of wild boar directly by relaxing the negative effect of cold winters on survival and reproduction, and indirectly by increasing food availability. However, region-specific responses need to be considered in order to fully understand a species' demographic response to climate change.

  10. Regional and seasonal response of a West Nile virus vector to climate change

    PubMed Central

    Morin, Cory W.; Comrie, Andrew C.

    2013-01-01

    Climate change will affect the abundance and seasonality of West Nile virus (WNV) vectors, altering the risk of virus transmission to humans. Using downscaled general circulation model output, we calculate a WNV vector's response to climate change across the southern United States using process-based modeling. In the eastern United States, Culex quinquefasciatus response to projected climate change displays a latitudinal and elevational gradient. Projected summer population depressions as a result of increased immature mortality and habitat drying are most severe in the south and almost absent further north; extended spring and fall survival is ubiquitous. Much of California also exhibits a bimodal pattern. Projected onset of mosquito season is delayed in the southwestern United States because of extremely dry and hot spring and summers; however, increased temperature and late summer and fall rains extend the mosquito season. These results are unique in being a broad-scale calculation of the projected impacts of climate change on a WNV vector. The results show that, despite projected widespread future warming, the future seasonal response of C. quinquefasciatus populations across the southern United States will not be homogeneous, and will depend on specific combinations of local and regional conditions. PMID:24019459

  11. Regional and seasonal response of a West Nile virus vector to climate change.

    PubMed

    Morin, Cory W; Comrie, Andrew C

    2013-09-24

    Climate change will affect the abundance and seasonality of West Nile virus (WNV) vectors, altering the risk of virus transmission to humans. Using downscaled general circulation model output, we calculate a WNV vector's response to climate change across the southern United States using process-based modeling. In the eastern United States, Culex quinquefasciatus response to projected climate change displays a latitudinal and elevational gradient. Projected summer population depressions as a result of increased immature mortality and habitat drying are most severe in the south and almost absent further north; extended spring and fall survival is ubiquitous. Much of California also exhibits a bimodal pattern. Projected onset of mosquito season is delayed in the southwestern United States because of extremely dry and hot spring and summers; however, increased temperature and late summer and fall rains extend the mosquito season. These results are unique in being a broad-scale calculation of the projected impacts of climate change on a WNV vector. The results show that, despite projected widespread future warming, the future seasonal response of C. quinquefasciatus populations across the southern United States will not be homogeneous, and will depend on specific combinations of local and regional conditions.

  12. Climate Change Responses of Hydrologic Flowpaths in Mountainous and Polar Regions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Godsey, S.; Gooseff, M. N.; Kirchner, J. W.; Tague, C.

    2009-12-01

    Hydrologic processes in mountainous and polar regions may respond differently to changes in the catchment energy budget that are anticipated to occur as climate changes. In the Sierra Nevada Mountains of California, warmer winter temperatures are expected to shift the phase of precipitation from snow to rain across a range of elevations. We examine whether this phase change will alter subsequent low flow regimes during the dry Mediterranean summers of this region. We show that changes in the phase of precipitation as well as changes in evapotranspiration losses from vegetation are key drivers in the hydrologic response of these mountains to climate change. In northern Alaska, the depth of the active layer above permafrost evolves over space and time, affecting subsurface flowpaths. Large changes in water or energy flows may lead to catastrophic loss of ground ice, known as thermokarst development. Thermokarst features can deliver large pulses of sediment and nutrients to lakes and streams, and further alter the hydrology because they expose previously insulated permafrost to the ground surface, and thus higher heat fluxes. Here we show the spatial and temporal development of the active layer inside of and outside of thermokarst features over the course of the warming season. We explore the importance of changes in subsurface topography as a driver of hydrologic response to climate change in arctic tundra catchments.

  13. Potential Changes in Disease Patterns and Pharmaceutical Use in Response to Climate Change

    PubMed Central

    Redshaw, Clare H.; Stahl-Timmins, Will M.; Fleming, Lora E.; Davidson, Iain; Depledge, Michael H.

    2013-01-01

    As climate change alters environmental conditions, the incidence and global patterns of human diseases are changing. These modifications to disease profiles and the effects upon human pharmaceutical usage are discussed. Climate-related environmental changes are associated with a rise in the incidence of chronic diseases already prevalent in the Northern Hemisphere, for example, cardiovascular disease and mental illness, leading to greater use of associated heavily used Western medications. Sufferers of respiratory diseases may exhibit exacerbated symptoms due to altered environmental conditions (e.g., pollen). Respiratory, water-borne, and food-borne toxicants and infections, including those that are vector borne, may become more common in Western countries, central and eastern Asia, and across North America. As new disease threats emerge, substantially higher pharmaceutical use appears inevitable, especially of pharmaceuticals not commonly employed at present (e.g., antiprotozoals). The use of medications for the treatment of general symptoms (e.g., analgesics) will also rise. These developments need to be viewed in the context of other major environmental changes (e.g., industrial chemical pollution, biodiversity loss, reduced water and food security) as well as marked shifts in human demographics, including aging of the population. To identify, prevent, mitigate, and adapt to potential threats, one needs to be aware of the major factors underlying changes in the use of pharmaceuticals and their subsequent release, deliberately or unintentionally, into the environment. This review explores the likely consequences of climate change upon the use of medical pharmaceuticals in the Northern Hemisphere. PMID:23909463

  14. Soil Microbial Community Responses to Multiple Experimental Climate Change Drivers ▿ †

    PubMed Central

    Castro, Hector F.; Classen, Aimée T.; Austin, Emily E.; Norby, Richard J.; Schadt, Christopher W.

    2010-01-01

    Researchers agree that climate change factors such as rising atmospheric [CO2] and warming will likely interact to modify ecosystem properties and processes. However, the response of the microbial communities that regulate ecosystem processes is less predictable. We measured the direct and interactive effects of climatic change on soil fungal and bacterial communities (abundance and composition) in a multifactor climate change experiment that exposed a constructed old-field ecosystem to different atmospheric CO2 concentration (ambient, +300 ppm), temperature (ambient, +3°C), and precipitation (wet and dry) might interact to alter soil bacterial and fungal abundance and community structure in an old-field ecosystem. We found that (i) fungal abundance increased in warmed treatments; (ii) bacterial abundance increased in warmed plots with elevated atmospheric [CO2] but decreased in warmed plots under ambient atmospheric [CO2]; (iii) the phylogenetic distribution of bacterial and fungal clones and their relative abundance varied among treatments, as indicated by changes in 16S rRNA and 28S rRNA genes; (iv) changes in precipitation altered the relative abundance of Proteobacteria and Acidobacteria, where Acidobacteria decreased with a concomitant increase in the Proteobacteria in wet relative to dry treatments; and (v) changes in precipitation altered fungal community composition, primarily through lineage specific changes within a recently discovered group known as soil clone group I. Taken together, our results indicate that climate change drivers and their interactions may cause changes in bacterial and fungal overall abundance; however, changes in precipitation tended to have a much greater effect on the community composition. These results illustrate the potential for complex community changes in terrestrial ecosystems under climate change scenarios that alter multiple factors simultaneously. PMID:20023089

  15. Compensation and climate: Latitudinal variation in ecototherm response to environmental change

    SciTech Connect

    Curtin, C.G.

    1995-06-01

    Thermal preference measured in a laboratory thermal gradient, and field body temperatures in a field enclosure, contrast the fundamental and realized thermal niches of ornate box turtles (Terrapene ornata) from northern, central, and southern locations. The relatively warmer thermal preference of southern turtles appears to result in lower body temperatures and relatively shorter activity periods. Variation in thermal constraints are input into computer simulations of ectotherm response to climate to assess latitudinal variation in turtle response to microclimate cooling (4{degrees} C), current climate (1970-1990), and climatic warming (3-5{degrees} C). Climatic warming is calculated to lead to a northward shift in turtle range and distribution with increases in northern and declines in southern populations. Microclimate cooling is estimated to result in declines in northern areas and in the core of the box turtle range. The local changes in microclimate, such as can result from shifts in land-use, can be greater than those resulting from large scale changes in climate. Suggesting that land managers and conservation biologists need to focus greater attention on the impact of changes in within patch structure of plant associations and its implications for alteration of microclimate and species life history.

  16. Research on the response of the water sources to the climatic change in Shiyang River Basin

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jin, Y. Z.; Zeng, J. J.; Hu, X. Q.; Sun, D. Y.; Song, Z. F.; Zhang, Y. L.; Lu, S. C.; Cui, Y. Q.

    2017-08-01

    The influence of the future climate change to the water resource will directly pose some impact on the watershed management planning and administrative strategies of Shiyang River Basin. With the purpose of exploring the influence of climate change to the runoff, this paper set Shiyang River as the study area and then established a SWAT basin hydrological model based on the data such as DEM, land use, soil, climate hydrology and so on. Besides, algorithm of SUFI2 embedded in SWAT-CUP software is adopted. The conclusion shows that SWAT Model can simulate the runoff process of Nanying River well. During the period of model verification and simulation, the runoff Nash-Sutcliffe efficient coefficient of the verification and simulation is 0.76 and 0.72 separately. The relative error between the simulation and actual measurement and the model efficient coefficient are both within the scope of acceptance, which means that the SWAT hydrological model can be properly applied into the runoff simulation of Shiyang River Basin. Meantime, analysis on the response of the water resources to the climate change in Shiyang River Basin indicates that the impact of climate change on runoff is remarkable under different climate change situations and the annual runoff will be greatly decreased as the precipitation falls and the temperature rises. Influence of precipitation to annual runoff is greater than that of temperature. Annual runoff differs obviously under different climate change situations. All in all, this paper tries to provide some technical assistance for the water sources development and utilization assessment and optimal configuration.

  17. Phenological behaviour of early spring flowering trees in Spain in response to recent climate changes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hidalgo-Galvez, M. D.; García-Mozo, H.; Oteros, J.; Mestre, A.; Botey, R.; Galán, C.

    2017-03-01

    This research reports the phenological trends of four early spring and late winter flowering trees in Spain (south Europe) from a recent period (1986-2012). The studied species were deciduous trees growing in different climatic areas: hazel (Corylus avellana L.), willow (Salix alba L.), ash (Fraxinus angustifolia Vahl.) and white mulberry (Morus alba L.). We analysed the response to climate and the trends of the following phenophases observed at the field: budburst, leaf unfolding, flowering, fruit ripening, fruit harvesting, leaf colour change and leaf-fall. The study was carried out in 17 sampling sites in the country with the aim of detecting the recent phenological response to the climate of these species, and the possible effect of climate change. We have observed differences in the phenological response to climate depending on each species. Sixty-one percent of studied sites suffered an advance of early spring phenophases, especially budburst on average by -0.67 days and flowering on average by -0.15 days during the studied period, and also in the subsequent fruit ripening and harvesting phases on average by -1.06 days. By contrast, it has been detected that 63% of sampling sites showed a delay in autumn vegetative phases, especially leaf-fall events on average by +1.15 days. The statistic correlation analysis shows in the 55% of the studied localities that phenological advances are the consequence of the increasing trend detected for temperature—being minimum temperature the most influential factor—and in the 52% of them, phenological advances occurred by rainfall variations. In general, leaf unfolding and flowering from these species showed negative correlations in relation to temperature and rainfall, whereas that leaf colour change and leaf-fall presented positive correlations. The results obtained have a great relevance due to the fact that they can be considered as reliable bio-indicators of the impact of the recent climate changes in southern

  18. Responses of tropical root crops to climate change: implications for Pacific food security

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gleadow, R.; Webber, B.; Macness, N.; Lisson, S.; Nauluvula, P.; Hargraves, J.; Crimp, S. J.

    2013-12-01

    Cassava and taro are an important source of calories in many parts of the developing world and hold much promise for meeting the need for food security in equatorial regions. Communities in the Pacific Island countries reliant on agriculture-based livelihood systems have been identified as particularly at risk from climate change, due to likely increases in crop failure, new patterns of pests and diseases, lack of appropriate seed and plant material, loss of livestock and potential loss of arable land. Recent shortfalls in agricultural production resulting from changing export markets, commodity prices, climatic variation, and population growth and urbanisation, have contributed further to regional food insecurity concerns. Cassava and taro contain herbivore defense chemicals that are detrimental to human health (cyanogenic glucosides and calcium oxalate). Unprocessed cassava can cause acute cyanide intoxication, paralysis and even death, especially during droughts. A number of activities are already underway in the Pacific region to identify ways to ameliorate existing climate risk and enhance current agricultural production. Whilst these activities are important to ensure long-term agricultural sustainability, there remains a significant degree of uncertainty as to how effective these strategies may be in the face of a changing and increasingly variable future climate. We present our current understanding of the impact of climate change on key Pacific production systems - specifically those based on the staple root crops, taro and cassava. This includes (1) Our understanding of the responses of cassava and taro crops to existing environmental drivers (climate, soil and nutrient interactions); (2) The responses of cassava and taro crops to enhanced CO2 conditions; and (3) Efforts to model productivity responses (within the APSIM framework) and results for locations in the Pacific.

  19. Soil erosion under climate change: simulatingthe response of temperature and rainfall changes in three UK catchments

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ciampalini, Rossano; Walker-Springett, Kate J.; Constantine, José Antonio; Hales, Tristram C.

    2015-04-01

    Soil erosion by water cost in environmental damages across the Great Britain is estimated in over £200m (2014 GBP) each year and could increase for the effect of climate change. Assessing the potential for increased climate-driven soil erosion, due to the several water processes involved (e.g., infiltration excess, return flow, direct precipitation onto saturated soil),is recognizedas a complex task. Climate change can have a positive and direct effect on soil erosionsuch the case of increasing rainfall in amount and intensity, or an indirect effect through the variation of the atmospheric CO2 level, which can improve plant productivityandwater infiltration capacity of soil reducing the likelihood of soil erosion. Changes in vegetation patterns and typologies with a different protection effect can lead also the soil system to dramatic changes in soil erosion rates, potentially amplifying or ameliorating the direct effects of climate change.Climate, vegetation and soil erosion are thus connected and several feedback effects could be accounted in the study of global change. Understanding these interactions may be a primary goal for clarifying the impact of global change on soil erosion and its consequences on related soil functions such as water and organic carbon storage support to vegetation and agricultural production. In this research, focused on three UK catchments (i.e. Conwy, 627 km2, Wales; Ehen, 225 km2, England; and Dee, 2100 km2, Scotland), we simulated soil erosionapplying SRES climatic scenarios(IPCC, 2000) for different CO2 emission levels. We modelled using Pesera "The Pan European Soil Erosion Risk Assessment" (Kirkby et al., 2004), a model for vegetation growing and soil erosion evaluation at regional scale. For each catchment,we realised a sensitivity - analysis - like test investigating different increments in temperature and rainfall, then, we compared the results of the SRES scenarios with the issues of the parametric sensitivity analysis. The

  20. Wood production response to climate change will depend critically on forest composition and structure.

    PubMed

    Coomes, David A; Flores, Olivier; Holdaway, Robert; Jucker, Tommaso; Lines, Emily R; Vanderwel, Mark C

    2014-12-01

    Established forests currently function as a major carbon sink, sequestering as woody biomass about 26% of global fossil fuel emissions. Whether forests continue to act as a global sink will depend on many factors, including the response of aboveground wood production (AWP; MgC ha(-1 ) yr(-1) ) to climate change. Here, we explore how AWP in New Zealand's natural forests is likely to change. We start by statistically modelling the present-day growth of 97 199 individual trees within 1070 permanently marked inventory plots as a function of tree size, competitive neighbourhood and climate. We then use these growth models to identify the factors that most influence present-day AWP and to predict responses to medium-term climate change under different assumptions. We find that if the composition and structure of New Zealand's forests were to remain unchanged over the next 30 years, then AWP would increase by 6-23%, primarily as a result of physiological responses to warmer temperatures (with no appreciable effect of changing rainfall). However, if warmth-requiring trees were able to migrate into currently cooler areas and if denser canopies were able to form, then a different AWP response is likely: forests growing in the cool mountain environments would show a 30% increase in AWP, while those in the lowland would hardly respond (on average, -3% when mean annual temperature exceeds 8.0 °C). We conclude that response of wood production to anthropogenic climate change is not only dependent on the physiological responses of individual trees, but is highly contingent on whether forests adjust in composition and structure.

  1. Engaging Storm Spotters and Community College Students in Regional Responses to Climate Change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mooney, M. E.; Ackerman, S. A.; Buhr, S. M.

    2012-12-01

    Resiliency to natural hazards includes climate literacy. With a record number of billion dollar weather disasters in 2011, each one enhanced by a warmer atmosphere, our nation needs new strategies to respond, mitigate, communicate and adapt to the impacts of climate change. We know that actions we take today matter, but finding ways to mobilize our citizenry remains largely elusive. One way to galvanize a meaningful response to climate change could involve National Weather Service (NWS) storm spotters and Community College students. Dedicated storm spotters represent decades of NOAA NWS efforts to engage and enlist public participation in community safety. Why not leverage this wealth of human capital to cultivate a similar mitigation and stewardship response? The Cooperative Institute for Meteorological Satellite Studies (CIMSS) at the University of Wisconsin-Madison conducted a pilot project with NWS storm spotters in the spring of 2011 via a web seminar on climate change, climate mitigation and emerging applications to access weather and climate data with mobile devices. Nineteen storm spotters participated and eleven provided feedback via a follow-up survey. A third of the respondents indicated that they had taken actions to minimize their carbon footprint; a majority (90%) indicated their likelihood to take action in the near future and more than two-thirds said they wanted to learn more about climate mitigation and sustainability. One attendee commented "Thank-you for putting together this web seminar. As a weather spotter, I found the information helpful, even humbling, to know climate change is already happening." CIMSS is also collaborating with the Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Sciences (CIRES) and Madison Area Technical College (MATC) on a climate education project where community college students take an on-line climate change course followed by the opportunity to apply for a summer internship. Through this program, two students

  2. Changes in climatic elements in the Pan-Hexi region during 1960-2014 and responses to global climatic changes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wei, Liu; Feng, Qi; Deo, Ravinesh C.

    2017-06-01

    In this paper, robust statistical methods (including the climatic tendency ratio, inverse distance weight (IDW), and Mann-Kendall's non-parametric statistical tests) were applied to analyze the annual sequences of meteorological data for the period 1960-2014. The results indicated that the mean annual air temperature in the Pan-Hexi and the surrounding regions has increased by 0.9 °C. Over the 55-year period of study, this represented a warming rate that was significantly higher than the contemporaneous warming rate in China and the rest of the world. The warming trend in northeastern Tibet was the most pronounced. Here, the mean warming rate exhibited an increasing trend from the mid-late 1980s, and the cold season-dominated warming changed to year-round warming. The rise in the amplitude of the mean minimum temperature was significant, and the variation in the amplitude of the extreme minimum temperature was greater than that of the extreme maximum temperature, exhibiting a variation period of approximately 10 years. Since 1960, the mean precipitation in the study region and the surrounding areas first increased, and then decreased, and then increased again rapidly from 2007. Precipitation and relative humidity trend showed a 13- and a 10-year variation period, respectively. Crop evapotranspiration exhibited a decreasing trend, but from 1993 onwards, there was an increasing trend and a 9-year variation period was also notable based on observed datasets. In the most recent 55 years (1960-2014), the sunshine duration and mean wind velocity in the study area first showed a decreasing trend followed by an increasing trend, and then it exhibited a decreasing trend from east to west of the study region. The temporal variations in the climatic elements were similar to those of China, suggesting that the climate change signal in the study region over the last 55 years appeared to be well correlated with the global climate change signal.

  3. Sundangrass reproductive biomass responses under climate change scenarios in oak savannah and mesic prairie mesocosm communities

    EPA Science Inventory

    Potential climate change effects include shifts in the distribution of plant species and changes in reproductive output. We tested the hypothesis that environmental stressors such as elevated temperature and drought that are associated with climate change would increase the repr...

  4. Sundangrass reproductive biomass responses under climate change scenarios in oak savannah and mesic prairie mesocosm communities

    EPA Science Inventory

    Potential climate change effects include shifts in the distribution of plant species and changes in reproductive output. We tested the hypothesis that environmental stressors such as elevated temperature and drought that are associated with climate change would increase the repr...

  5. Sensitivity of health sector indicators' response to climate change in Ghana.

    PubMed

    Dovie, Delali B K; Dzodzomenyo, Mawuli; Ogunseitan, Oladele A

    2017-01-01

    There is accumulating evidence that the emerging burden of global climate change threatens the fidelity of routine indicators for disease detection and management of risks to public health. The threat partially reflects the conservative character of the health sector and the reluctance to adopt new indicators, despite the growing awareness that existing environmental health indicators were developed to respond to risks that may no longer be relevant, and are too simplistic to also act as indicators for newer global-scale risk factors. This study sought to understand the scope of existing health indicators, while aiming to discover new indicators for building resilience against three climate sensitive diseases (cerebro spinal meningitis, malaria and diarrhea). Therefore, new potential indicators derived from human and biophysical origins were developed to complement existing health indicators, thereby creating climate-sensitive battery of robust composite indices of resilience in health planning. Using Ghana's health sector as a case study systematic international literature review, national expert consultation, and focus group outcomes yielded insights into the relevance, sensitivity and impacts of 45 indicators in 11 categories in responding to climate change. In total, 65% of the indicators were sensitive to health impacts of climate change; 24% acted directly; 31% synergistically; and 45% indirectly, with indicator relevance strongly associated with type of health response. Epidemiological indicators (e.g. morbidity) and health demographic indicators (e.g. population structure) require adjustments with external indicators (e.g. biophysical, policy) to be resilient to climate change. Therefore, selective integration of social and ecological indicators with existing public health indicators improves the fidelity of the health sector to adopt more robust planning of interdependent systems to build resilience. The study highlights growing uncertainties in

  6. Using temporal coherence to determine the response to climate change in Boreal Shield lakes.

    PubMed

    Arnott, Shelley E; Keller, Bill; Dillon, Peter J; Yan, Norman; Paterson, Michael; Findlay, David

    2003-01-01

    Climate change is expected to have important impacts on aquatic ecosystems. On the Boreal Shield, mean annual air temperatures are expected to increase 2 to 4 degrees C over the next 50 years. An important challenge is to predict how changes in climate and climate variability will impact natural systems so that sustainable management policies can be implemented. To predict responses to complex ecosystem changes associated with climate change, we used long-term biotic databases to evaluate how important elements of the biota in Boreal Shield lakes have responded to past fluctuations in climate. Our long-term records span a two decade period where there have been unusually cold years and unusually warm years. We used coherence analyses to test for regionally operating controls on climate, water temperature, pH, and plankton richness and abundance in three regions across Ontario: the Experimental Lakes Area, Sudbury, and Dorset. Inter-annual variation in air temperature was similar among regions, but there was a weak relationship among regions for precipitation. While air temperature was closely related to lake surface temperatures in each of the regions, there were weak relationships between lake surface temperature and richness or abundance of the plankton. However, inter-annual changes in lake chemistry (i.e., pH) were correlated with some biotic variables. In some lakes in Sudbury and Dorset, pH was dependent on extreme events. For example, El Nino related droughts resulted in acidification pulses in some lakes that influenced phytoplankton and zooplankton richness. These results suggest that there can be strong heterogeneity in lake ecosystem responses within and across regions.

  7. Policy strategies to address sustainability of Alaskan boreal forests in response to a directionally changing climate

    PubMed Central

    Chapin, F. Stuart; Lovecraft, Amy L.; Zavaleta, Erika S.; Nelson, Joanna; Robards, Martin D.; Kofinas, Gary P.; Trainor, Sarah F.; Peterson, Garry D.; Huntington, Henry P.; Naylor, Rosamond L.

    2006-01-01

    Human activities are altering many factors that determine the fundamental properties of ecological and social systems. Is sustainability a realistic goal in a world in which many key process controls are directionally changing? To address this issue, we integrate several disparate sources of theory to address sustainability in directionally changing social–ecological systems, apply this framework to climate-warming impacts in Interior Alaska, and describe a suite of policy strategies that emerge from these analyses. Climate warming in Interior Alaska has profoundly affected factors that influence landscape processes (climate regulation and disturbance spread) and natural hazards, but has only indirectly influenced ecosystem goods such as food, water, and wood that receive most management attention. Warming has reduced cultural services provided by ecosystems, leading to some of the few institutional responses that directly address the causes of climate warming, e.g., indigenous initiatives to the Arctic Council. Four broad policy strategies emerge: (i) enhancing human adaptability through learning and innovation in the context of changes occurring at multiple scales; (ii) increasing resilience by strengthening negative (stabilizing) feedbacks that buffer the system from change and increasing options for adaptation through biological, cultural, and economic diversity; (iii) reducing vulnerability by strengthening institutions that link the high-latitude impacts of climate warming to their low-latitude causes; and (iv) facilitating transformation to new, potentially more beneficial states by taking advantage of opportunities created by crisis. Each strategy provides societal benefits, and we suggest that all of them be pursued simultaneously. PMID:17008403

  8. Policy strategies to address sustainability of Alaskan boreal forests in response to a directionally changing climate.

    PubMed

    Chapin, F Stuart; Lovecraft, Amy L; Zavaleta, Erika S; Nelson, Joanna; Robards, Martin D; Kofinas, Gary P; Trainor, Sarah F; Peterson, Garry D; Huntington, Henry P; Naylor, Rosamond L

    2006-11-07

    Human activities are altering many factors that determine the fundamental properties of ecological and social systems. Is sustainability a realistic goal in a world in which many key process controls are directionally changing? To address this issue, we integrate several disparate sources of theory to address sustainability in directionally changing social-ecological systems, apply this framework to climate-warming impacts in Interior Alaska, and describe a suite of policy strategies that emerge from these analyses. Climate warming in Interior Alaska has profoundly affected factors that influence landscape processes (climate regulation and disturbance spread) and natural hazards, but has only indirectly influenced ecosystem goods such as food, water, and wood that receive most management attention. Warming has reduced cultural services provided by ecosystems, leading to some of the few institutional responses that directly address the causes of climate warming, e.g., indigenous initiatives to the Arctic Council. Four broad policy strategies emerge: (i) enhancing human adaptability through learning and innovation in the context of changes occurring at multiple scales; (ii) increasing resilience by strengthening negative (stabilizing) feedbacks that buffer the system from change and increasing options for adaptation through biological, cultural, and economic diversity; (iii) reducing vulnerability by strengthening institutions that link the high-latitude impacts of climate warming to their low-latitude causes; and (iv) facilitating transformation to new, potentially more beneficial states by taking advantage of opportunities created by crisis. Each strategy provides societal benefits, and we suggest that all of them be pursued simultaneously.

  9. Arctic climate response to regional aerosol emission changes between 1980 and 2005

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ekman, A.; Acosta Navarro, J. C.; Varma, V.; Riipinen, I.; Seland, O.; Kirkevag, A.; Struthers, H.; Iverson, T.; Hansson, H. C.

    2015-12-01

    Emissions of aerosols and their precursors have due to air quality regulations drastically decreased at northern hemisphere mid-latitudes during the latest decades. At the same time, emissions in the northern hemisphere tropics and subtropics have increased e.g. as a consequence of the strong economic growth in East Asia. Using the fully coupled ocean-atmosphere climate model NorESM, we assess the influence of these regional emission changes on climate with a particular focus on the Arctic. Different mechanisms that couple the localized forcing with the corresponding temperature response are also suggested. The European emission reductions of SO2 that have taken place since the 1980's, seem to have had a disproportionally large effect on the Arctic climate compared to the rest of the northern hemisphere. Locally, the Arctic warming due to the decreased SO2 exceeds 1K. The primary reason for this strong remote temperature response is an increased poleward dry-static heat transport, which is initiated by the enhanced meridional temperature gradient. Emission changes of other aerosol types and over other regions such as North America and Asia appear to have had a much smaller influence on recent Artic climate change. Possible reasons for this differential response will be discussed.

  10. Understanding the varied response of the extratropical storm tracks to climate change.

    PubMed

    O'Gorman, Paul A

    2010-11-09

    Transient eddies in the extratropical storm tracks are a primary mechanism for the transport of momentum, energy, and water in the atmosphere, and as such are a major component of the climate system. Changes in the extratropical storm tracks under global warming would impact these transports, the ocean circulation and carbon cycle, and society through changing weather patterns. I show that the southern storm track intensifies in the multimodel mean of simulations of 21st century climate change, and that the seasonal cycle of storm-track intensity increases in amplitude in both hemispheres. I use observations of the present-day seasonal cycle to confirm the relationship between storm-track intensity and the mean available potential energy of the atmosphere, and show how this quantitative relationship can be used to account for much of the varied response in storm-track intensity to global warming, including substantially different responses in simulations with different climate models. The results suggest that storm-track intensity is not related in a simple way to global-mean surface temperature, so that, for example, a stronger southern storm track in response to present-day global warming does not imply it was also stronger in hothouse climates of the past.

  11. Understanding the varied response of the extratropical storm tracks to climate change

    PubMed Central

    O’Gorman, Paul A.

    2010-01-01

    Transient eddies in the extratropical storm tracks are a primary mechanism for the transport of momentum, energy, and water in the atmosphere, and as such are a major component of the climate system. Changes in the extratropical storm tracks under global warming would impact these transports, the ocean circulation and carbon cycle, and society through changing weather patterns. I show that the southern storm track intensifies in the multimodel mean of simulations of 21st century climate change, and that the seasonal cycle of storm-track intensity increases in amplitude in both hemispheres. I use observations of the present-day seasonal cycle to confirm the relationship between storm-track intensity and the mean available potential energy of the atmosphere, and show how this quantitative relationship can be used to account for much of the varied response in storm-track intensity to global warming, including substantially different responses in simulations with different climate models. The results suggest that storm-track intensity is not related in a simple way to global-mean surface temperature, so that, for example, a stronger southern storm track in response to present-day global warming does not imply it was also stronger in hothouse climates of the past. PMID:20974916

  12. Detecting cross-equatorial wind change as a fingerprint of climate response to anthropogenic aerosol forcing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Hai; Xie, Shang-Ping; Tokinaga, Hiroki; Liu, Qinyu; Kosaka, Yu

    2016-04-01

    Anthropogenic aerosols are a major driver of the twetieth century climate change. In climate models, the aerosol forcing, larger in the Northern than Southern Hemispheres, induces an interhemispheric Hadley circulation. In support of the model result, we detected a robust change in the zonal mean cross-equatorial wind over the past 60 years from ship observations and reanalyses, accompanied by physically consistent changes in atmospheric pressure and marine cloud cover. Single-forcing experiments indicate that the observed change in cross-equatorial wind is a fingerprint of aerosol forcing. This zonal mean mode follows the evolution of global aerosol forcing that is distinct from regional changes in the Atlantic sector. Atmospheric simulations successfully reproduce this interhemispheric mode, indicating the importance of sea surface temperature mediation in response to anthropogenic aerosol forcing. As societies awaken to reduce aerosol emissions, a phase reversal of this interhemispheric mode is expected in the 21st century.

  13. Temperature tracking by North Sea benthic invertebrates in response to climate change.

    PubMed

    Hiddink, Jan G; Burrows, Michael T; García Molinos, Jorge

    2015-01-01

    Climate change is a major threat to biodiversity and distributions shifts are one of the most significant threats to global warming, but the extent to which these shifts keep pace with a changing climate is yet uncertain. Understanding the factors governing range shifts is crucial for conservation management to anticipate patterns of biodiversity distribution under future anthropogenic climate change. Soft-sediment invertebrates are a key faunal group because of their role in marine biogeochemistry and as a food source for commercial fish species. However, little information exists on their response to climate change. Here, we evaluate changes in the distribution of 65 North Sea benthic invertebrate species between 1986 and 2000 by examining their geographic, bathymetric and thermal niche shifts and test whether species are tracking their thermal niche as defined by minimum, mean or maximum sea bottom (SBT) and surface (SST) temperatures. Temperatures increased in the whole North Sea with many benthic invertebrates showing north-westerly range shifts (leading/trailing edges as well as distribution centroids) and deepening. Nevertheless, distribution shifts for most species (3.8-7.3 km yr(-1) interquantile range) lagged behind shifts in both SBT and SST (mean 8.1 km yr(-1)), resulting in many species experiencing increasing temperatures. The velocity of climate change (VoCC) of mean SST accurately predicted both the direction and magnitude of distribution centroid shifts, while maximum SST did the same for contraction of the trailing edge. The VoCC of SBT was not a good predictor of range shifts. No good predictor of expansions of the leading edge was found. Our results show that invertebrates need to shift at different rates and directions to track the climate velocities of different temperature measures, and are therefore lagging behind most temperature measures. If these species cannot withstand a change in thermal habitat, this could ultimately lead to a drop in

  14. Forests, fire, floods and fish: nonlinear biophysical responses to changing climate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pierce, J. L.; Baxter, C.; Yager, E. M.; Fremier, A. K.; Crosby, B. T.; Smith, A. M.; Kennedy, B.; Hicke, J. A.; Feris, K.

    2009-12-01

    consequences for organisms, and 6) how hypothesized shifts in climate-related forces alter the function and resiliency of the Salmon River ecosystem. Integrated approaches include the application of legacy datasets, the exploration of historic chemical and physical records of ecosystem change, intensive stream, riparian and forest monitoring, the use of paired experimental watershed approaches, and the development of spatial analysis tools. If feedbacks among geomorphic, hydrologic and ecologic systems are positive this suggests a possible state change in response to a changing climate.

  15. Hydrological response to changing climate conditions: Spatial streamflow variability in the boreal region

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Teutschbein, Claudia; Grabs, Thomas; Karlsen, Reinert H.; Laudon, Hjalmar; Bishop, Kevin

    2016-04-01

    It has long been recognized that streamflow-generating processes are not only dependent on climatic conditions, but also affected by physical catchment properties such as topography, geology, soils and land cover. We hypothesize that these landscape characteristics do not only lead to highly variable hydrologic behavior of rather similar catchments under the same stationary climate conditions (Karlsen et al., 2014), but that they also play a fundamental role for the sensitivity of a catchment to a changing climate (Teutschbein et al., 2015). A multi-model ensemble based on 15 regional climate models was combined with a multi-catchment approach to explore the hydrologic sensitivity of 14 partially nested and rather similar catchments in Northern Sweden to changing climate conditions and the importance of small-scale spatial variability. Current (1981-2010) and future (2061-2090) streamflow was simulated with the HBV model. As expected, projected increases in temperature and precipitation resulted in increased total available streamflow, with lower spring and summer flows, but substantially higher winter streamflow. Furthermore, significant changes in flow durations with lower chances of both high and low flows can be expected in boreal Sweden in the future. This overall trend in projected streamflow pattern changes was comparable among the analyzed catchments while the magnitude of change differed considerably. This suggests that catchments belonging to the same region can show distinctly different degrees of hydrological responses to the same external climate change signal. We reason that differences in spatially distributed physical catchment properties at smaller scales are not only of great importance for current streamflow behavior, but also play a major role as first-order control for the sensitivity of catchments to changing climate conditions. References Karlsen, R.H., T. Grabs, K. Bishop, H. Laudon, and J. Seibert (2014). Landscape controls on

  16. 'Tales of Symphonia': extinction dynamics in response to past climate change in Madagascan rainforests.

    PubMed

    Virah-Sawmy, Malika; Bonsall, Michael B; Willis, Katherine J

    2009-12-23

    Madagascar's rainforests are among the most biodiverse in the world. Understanding the population dynamics of important species within these forests in response to past climatic variability provides valuable insight into current and future species composition. Here, we use a population-level approach to analyse palaeoecological records over the last 5300 years to understand how populations of Symphonia cf. verrucosa became locally extinct in some rainforest fragments along the southeast coast of Madagascar in response to rapid climate change, yet persisted in others. Our results indicate that regional (climate) variability contributed to synchronous decline of S. cf. verrucosa populations in these forests. Superimposed on regional fluctuations were local processes that could have contributed or mitigated extinction. Specifically, in the forest with low soil nutrients, population model predictions indicated that there was coexistence between S. cf. verrucosa and Erica spp., but in the nutrient-rich forest, interspecific effects between Symphonia and Erica spp. may have pushed Symphonia to extinction at the peak of climatic change. We also demonstrate that Symphonia is a good indicator of a threshold event, exhibiting erratic fluctuations prior to and long after the critical climatic point has passed.

  17. Hydrological response to changing climate conditions: Spatial streamflow variability in the boreal region

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Teutschbein, C.; Grabs, T.; Karlsen, R. H.; Laudon, H.; Bishop, K.

    2015-12-01

    In this paper we combined a multimodel ensemble based on 15 regional climate models with a multicatchment approach to explore the hydrologic sensitivity of 14 neighboring and rather similar catchments to changing climate conditions. Current (1982-2010) and future (2062-2090) streamflow was simulated with the HBV model. A diagnostic approach was used, which considered major behavioral catchment functions by using hydrologically relevant signatures related to overall water balance, flow duration curves and hydrograph attributes. Projected increases in temperature and precipitation resulted in increased total available streamflow, with lower spring and summer flows, but substantially higher winter streamflow. Furthermore, significant changes in flow durations with lower chances of both high and low flows can be expected in boreal Sweden in the future. This overall trend in projected streamflow pattern changes was comparable among the analyzed catchments but the magnitude of change differed considerably. This suggests that catchments belonging to the same region can show distinctly different degrees of hydrological responses to the same external climate change signal. We reason that differences in spatially distributed physical catchment properties within catchments are not only of great importance for current streamflow behavior, but also play a major role in the sensitivity of catchments to changing climate conditions.

  18. [Responses of subtropical conifer plantation to future climate change: a simulation study].

    PubMed

    Mi, Na; Yu, Gui-Rui; Wen, Xue-Fa; Sun, Xiao-Min; Wang, Shu-Sen

    2008-09-01

    The responses of subtropical conifer plantation to climate change scenarios were investigated in Qianyanzhou by the process-based physiological-ecological model EALCO (ecological assimilation of land and climate observation). The results showed that CO2 concentration had the greatest effects on the carbon and water fluxes of the plantation, followed by temperature, and precipitation. CO2 concentration was the main driving factor for the gross photosynthesis productivity of this plantation ecosystem, and temperature and CO2 concentration were the key environmental factors controlling the ecosystem respiration. Increasing temperature accelerated the respiration of aboveground part dramatically, while increasing CO2 concentration had greater effects on soil respiration. The evapotranspiration was enhanced by increasing temperature, but reduced by increasing CO2 concentration. Under the future climate changing scenario (the year 2100), the net primary productivity of this plantation ecosystem would be increased by 22%, suggesting that this ecosystem is still capable of sequestrating carbon.

  19. Water yield responses to climate change and variability across the North–South Transect of Eastern China (NSTEC)

    Treesearch

    Nan Lu; Ge Sun; Xiaoming Feng; Bojie Fu

    2013-01-01

    China is facing a growing water crisis due to climate and land use change, and rise in human water demand across this rapidly developing country. Understanding the spatial and temporal ecohydrologic responses to climate change is critical to sustainable water resource management. We investigated water yield (WY) responses to historical (1981–2000) and projected...

  20. Climate Change and Professional Responsibility: A Declaration of Helsinki for Engineers.

    PubMed

    Lawlor, Rob; Morley, Helen

    2017-03-09

    In this paper, we argue that the professional engineering institutions ought to develop a Declaration of Climate Action. Climate change is a serious global problem, and the majority of greenhouse gas emissions come from industries that are enabled by engineers and represented by the engineering professional institutions. If the professional institutions take seriously the claim that a profession should be self-regulating, with codes of ethics that go beyond mere obedience to the law, and if they take their own ethical codes seriously, recognising their responsibility to the public and to future generations (and also recognising a duty of "responsible leadership"), the professional institutions ought to develop a declaration for engineers, addressing climate change. Our argument here is largely inspired by the history of the Declaration of Helsinki. The Declaration of Helsinki was created by the medical profession for the profession, and it held physicians to a higher standard of ethical conduct than was found in the legal framework of individual countries. Although it was not originally a legal document, the influence of the Declaration can be seen in the fact that it is now enshrined in law in a number of different countries. Thus, we argue that the engineering profession could, and should, play a significant role in the abatement of climate change by making changes within the profession. If the engineering profession sets strict standards for professional engineers, with sanctions for those who refuse to comply, this could have a significant impact in relation to our efforts to develop a coordinated response to climate change.

  1. Exploring the universal ecological responses to climate change in a univoltine butterfly.

    PubMed

    Fenberg, Phillip B; Self, Angela; Stewart, John R; Wilson, Rebecca J; Brooks, Stephen J

    2016-05-01

    Animals with distinct life stages are often exposed to different temperatures during each stage. Thus, how temperature affects these life stages should be considered for broadly understanding the ecological consequences of climate warming on such species. For example, temperature variation during particular life stages may affect respective change in body size, phenology and geographic range, which have been identified as the "universal" ecological responses to climate change. While each of these responses has been separately documented across a number of species, it is not known whether each response occurs together within a species. The influence of temperature during particular life stages may help explain each of these ecological responses to climate change. Our goal was to determine if monthly temperature variation during particular life stages of a butterfly species can predict respective changes in body size and phenology. We also refer to the literature to assess if temperature variability during the adult stage influences range change over time. Using historical museum collections paired with monthly temperature records, we show that changes in body size and phenology of the univoltine butterfly, Hesperia comma, are partly dependent upon temporal variation in summer temperatures during key stages of their life cycle. June temperatures, which are likely to affect growth rate of the final larval instar, are important for predicting adult body size (for males only; showing a positive relationship with temperature). July temperatures, which are likely to influence the pupal stage, are important for predicting the timing of adult emergence (showing a negative relationship with temperature). Previous studies show that August temperatures, which act on the adult stage, are linked to range change. Our study highlights the importance of considering temperature variation during each life stage over historic time-scales for understanding intraspecific response to

  2. Does an understanding of ecosystems responses to rainfall pulses improve predictions of responses of drylands to climate change?

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Drylands will experience more intense and frequent droughts and floods. Ten-year field experiments manipulating the amount and variability of precipitation suggest that we cannot predict responses of drylands to climate change based on pulse experimentation. Long-term drought experiments showed no e...

  3. Modeling the Response of Glaciers to Climate Change in the Upper North Saskatchewan River Basin

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Booth, E.; Byrne, J. M.; Jiskoot, H.; MacDonald, R. J.

    2011-12-01

    Alpine glaciers act as barometers of climatic change, responding directly to longterm changes in temperature and precipitation with changes in mass balance, resulting in volume and length modifications. The heavily glaciated Upper North Saskatchewan River Basin (UNSRB), Alberta, Canada, represents a crucial portion of the headwaters for the Saskatchewan-Nelson watershed that spans the northern interior of the continent and drains into Hudson's Bay over 1500 km away. Historically, glacier melt runoff provides a significant percentage of late-summer streamflow in the UNSRB. Evidence suggests that recent warming has caused a change in glacier mass balance in the UNSRB that is unprecedented during the Holocene. Analysis of projected climate indices shows that the longterm negative mass balance of glaciers in the region will likely continue to decline over the next century. The effect of recent historical climate change on the glaciers in UNSRB is simulated using a modified version of the physically based Generate Earth SYstems Science (GENESYS) hydromet model. GENESYS has previously been employed to watersheds on the eastern slopes of the Rocky Mountains to simulate daily hydro-met processes at a high resolution over complex terrain, focusing on modeling snow water equivalent and the timing of the spring melt. A mass balance glacier routine is incorporated into GENESYS to more accurately gauge the effects of climate change on the glaciers located in the UNSRB. GENESYS daily micrometeorological data is used to drive a series of glacial ice and snow algorithms that include accumulation, ablation and ice redistribution over the glacier. GCM future ensembles were downscaled and applied to the model to predict changes in the mass balance of glaciers in the UNSRB under a range of likely climate scenarios. Results include time series of changes in glacier mass balance, length, and hydrologic response to changing ice volumes up to the year 2100.

  4. Seasonal response of grasslands to climate change on the Tibetan Plateau.

    PubMed

    Yu, Haiying; Xu, Jianchu; Okuto, Erick; Luedeling, Eike

    2012-01-01

    Monitoring vegetation dynamics and their responses to climate change has been the subject of considerable research. This paper aims to detect change trends in grassland activity on the Tibetan Plateau between 1982 and 2006 and relate these to changes in climate. Grassland activity was analyzed by evaluating remotely sensed Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) data collected at 15-day intervals between 1982 and 2006. The timings of vegetation stages (start of green-up, beginning of the growing season, plant maturity, start of senescence and end of the growing season) were assessed using the NDVI ratio method. Mean NDVI values were determined for major vegetation stages (green-up, fast growth, maturity and senescence). All vegetation variables were linked with datasets of monthly temperature and precipitation, and correlations between variables were established using Partial Least Squares regression. Most parts of the Tibetan Plateau showed significantly increasing temperatures, as well as clear advances in late season phenological stages by several weeks. Rainfall trends and significant long-term changes in early season phenology occurred on small parts of the plateau. Vegetation activity increased significantly for all vegetation stages. Most of these changes were related to increasing temperatures during the growing season and in some cases during the previous winter. Precipitation effects appeared less pronounced. Warming thus appears to have shortened the growing season, while increasing vegetation activity. Shortening of the growing season despite a longer thermally favorable period implies that vegetation on the Tibetan Plateau is unable to exploit additional thermal resources availed by climate change. Ecosystem composition may no longer be well attuned to the local temperature regime, which has changed rapidly over the past three decades. This apparent lag of the vegetation assemblage behind changes in climate should be taken into account when

  5. Vegetation response to climate change in Alaska: examples from the fossil record

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Ager, Thomas A.

    2007-01-01

    Preface: This report was presented as an invited paper at the Fish & Wildlife Service Climate Forum held in Anchorage, Alaska on February 21-23, 2007. The purpose of the talk was to provide some examples of past climate changes that appear to have caused significant responses in Alaskan vegetation. These examples are based on interpretations of dated fossil assemblages (pollen, spores and plant macrofossils) collected and interpreted by U.S. Geological Survey and collaborating scientists from other scientific organizations during the past several decades.

  6. Simulating hydrologic response to climate change scenarios in four selected watersheds of New Hampshire

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Bjerklie, David M.; Ayotte, Joseph D.; Cahillane, Matthew J.

    2015-01-01

    The effects of hydrologic change on human health and well-being could be most readily apparent with respect to changes in streamflow and the subsequent increase in the frequency of minor flooding and the frequency of summer and fall low streamflows. These changes could require the development of plans to adapt, protect, and upgrade infrastructure, such as bridges, culverts, roads, and other structures. The precipitation runoff modeling shows that rivers and watersheds in New Hampshire will likely change in response to climate change, and that this response varies with season and latitude. Although four representative areas were simulated in this study, additional models could be used to predict the response over the entire State.

  7. Modeling the Hydrological Response to Climate Change in an Arid Inland River Basin

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zheng, C.; Zhang, A.; Tian, Y.; Zheng, Y.; Liu, J.

    2014-12-01

    Located deep in the hinterlands of Eurasia, the Heihe River Basin (HRB) is an arid inland river basin in northwest China where the hydrologic regime responds sensitively to climate change. From the headwater region to terminal lakes, the HRB can be roughly divided into three sections, i.e., the upstream Qilian Mountains, the midstream oases and the downstream Gobi Desert. Runoff generated in the upstream mountainous terrains, dominated by climate variations, is the critical water resource for the whole river basin. With increasing intensification of climate change, there is an urgent need to understand future changes of water resources and water-related disasters to support regional water management. This study investigates the potential impact of climate change on hydrologic processes in the upper HRB for the future period of 2021~2150. Downscaled temperature and precipitation projections from six General Circulation Models under two emission scenarios (RCP4.5 and RCP8.5) are adopted to drive a commonly used flow model, Soil Water Assessment Tool (SWAT), for the upper HRB. The impacts of climate change on the total runoff and its components are quantified based on the future climate scenario analysis and the results of SWAT simulation. To understand how the climate change affects the availability and distribution of water resources in the middle and lower HRB where irrigated agriculture and ecosystem conservation compete for water resources, runoffs from the upper HRB are used as the boundary conditions for an integrated groundwater-surface water model based on the USGS GSFLOW for the middle and lower HRB. The integrated model assimilated multiple types of data including groundwater levels at monitoring wells, streamflow at gaging stations, and evapotranspiration (ET) derived from remote sensing data. The calibrated model was able to adequately reproduce the observed hydrological variables. The integrated model was then used to assess the potential response of the

  8. Beyond Adapting to Climate Change: Embedding Adaptation in Responses to Multiple Threats and Stresses

    SciTech Connect

    Wilbanks, Thomas J; Kates, Dr. Robert W.

    2010-01-01

    Climate change impacts are already being experienced in every region of the United States and every part of the world most severely in Arctic regions and adaptation is needed now. Although climate change adaptation research is still in its infancy, significant adaptation planning in the United States has already begun in a number of localities. This article seeks to broaden the adaptation effort by integrating it with broader frameworks of hazards research, sustainability science, and community and regional resilience. To extend the range of experience, we draw from ongoing case studies in the Southeastern United States and the environmental history of New Orleans to consider the multiple threats and stresses that all communities and regions experience. Embedding climate adaptation in responses to multiple threats and stresses helps us to understand climate change impacts, themselves often products of multiple stresses, to achieve community acceptance of needed adaptations as co-benefits of addressing multiple threats, and to mainstream the process of climate adaptation through the larger envelope of social relationships, communication channels, and broad-based awareness of needs for risk management that accompany community resilience.

  9. Mechanisms that Amplify, Attenuate and Deviate Glacier Response to Climate Change in Central East Greenland. (Invited)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jiskoot, H.

    2013-12-01

    A multidecadal review of glacier fluctuations and case-studies of glacier processes and environments in central East Greenland will be used to demonstrate Mechanisms that Amplify, Attenuate and Deviate glacier response to climate forcings (MAAD). The different spatial and temporal scales at which MAAD affect mass balance and ice flow may complicate interpretation and longterm extrapolation of glacier response to climate change. A framework of MAAD characterisation and best-practice for interpreting climate signals while taking into account MAAD will be proposed. Glaciers in the Watkins Bjerge, Geikie Plateau and Stauning Alps regions of central East Greenland (68°-72°N) contain about 50000 km2 of glacierized area peripheral to the Greenland Ice Sheet. Within the region, large north-south and coast-inland climatic gradients, as well as complicated topography and glacier dynamics, result in discrepant glacier behaviour. Average retreat rates have doubled from about 2 to 4 km2 a-1 between the late 20th and early 21st centuries. However, glaciers terminating along the Atlantic coast display two times the retreat, thinning, and acceleration rates compared to glaciers terminating in inland fjords or on land. Despite similar climatic forcing variable glacier behaviour is apparent: individual glacier length change ranges from +57 m a-1 to -428 m a-1, though most retreat -20 to -100 m a-1. Interacting dynamic, mass balance and glacio-morphological mechanisms can amplify, attenuate or deviate glacier response (MAAD) to climate change, thus complicating the climatological interpretation of glacier length, area, and thickness changes. East Greenland MAAD include a range of common positive and negative feedback mechanisms in surface mass balance and terminus and subglacial boundary conditions affecting ice flow, but also mechanisms that have longterm or delayed effects. Certain MAAD may affect glacier change interpretation on multiple timescales: e.g. surging glaciers do not

  10. Transient Ecotone Response to Climatic Change: Some Conceptual and Modelling Approaches.

    PubMed

    Neilson, Ronald P

    1993-08-01

    Accurate prediction of the ecological impacts of climatic change is a pressing challenge to the science of ecology. The current state of the art for broad-scale estimates of change in biomes and ecotones between biomes is limited to equilibrium estimates of ecological change under some future equilibrium climate. Uncertainties in these estimates abound, ranging from uncertainties in future climate scenarios to uncertainties in our ecological models and finally to uncertainties in modelling the feedbacks between the climate and the biosphere. Ecologists and policymakers need to go beyond equilibrium estimates of biosphere change to transient responses of the biosphere as the climate changes. Ecotones between biomes have been suggested as sensitive areas of change that could be effectively modelled and monitored for future change. Ecotones are also important in influencing local and regional biodiversity patterns and ecological flows. The ecological processes that could affect change at ecotones and within biomes are discussed; they include internal ecosystem processes, such as competition, and external abiotic processes, most notably drought and related disturbances. Drought followed by infestations and fire appears to be the most likely process that could mediate ecological change under a rapidly changing climate. The impacts would be apparent all across biomes, not just at ecotones. However, specific predictions about the dynamics of ecotones can be made qualitatively, based on a theory of patch scaling and diversity in relation to abiotic stressors. Under current conditions, the size of homogeneous patches is expected to be small at ecotones, but to enlarge with distance from the ecotone. Directional climatic change should promote a coalescence of patches on one side of the ecotone and increased fragmentation on the other side. Ecotones should begin to blur as viewed from a satellite only to re-form at some later date in a new location. This view is in contrast

  11. Modelling the Response of two Ice Caps in Iceland to Climate Changes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Adalgeirsdottir, G.; Johannesson, T.; Bjornsson, H.

    2004-05-01

    The response of two ice caps in Iceland to climate changes is analysed with a finite difference ice flow model coupled with a degree-day mass balance model. The degree-day mass balance model is calibrated against mass balance observations from numerous locations on both ice caps, from the period 1988--2002 and 1993--2002 for Hofsjökull and Vatnajökull, respectively, using daily meteorological data from meteorological stations close to the ice caps. The dynamic computations are forced by a climate change scenario for the Nordic countries which was defined as a part of the Climate, Water and Energy (CWE) project. It specifies a warming rate of 0.015° C per year in mid summer and 0.03° C per year in mid winter, with a sinusoidal variation through the year. Precipitation is either held constant during the computation or increased by 5% per ° C of warming. The model runs predict the ice volume of Hofsjökull to be reduced by half within about 100 years. The volume reduction is slow during the first decades but speeds up during the following decades, given that the warming rate remains the same. Runoff from the area that is presently covered by the glacier is predicted to have increased by approximately 0.5 m a-1 30 years from now due to reduction in the volume of the glacier. The response of Vatnajökull is more complicated as some of the outlet glaciers are far from balance with the present climate and some of the largest ones are surge-type glaciers. Under present climate conditions, most of the the outlet glaciers of Vatnajökull are receding and a warmer climate causes the recession to accelerate. Future surges may, however, cause irregular temporary advances of some of the outlets in spite of a generally warming climate.

  12. Plant population differentiation and climate change: responses of grassland species along an elevational gradient.

    PubMed

    Frei, Esther R; Ghazoul, Jaboury; Matter, Philippe; Heggli, Martin; Pluess, Andrea R

    2014-02-01

    Mountain ecosystems are particularly susceptible to climate change. Characterizing intraspecific variation of alpine plants along elevational gradients is crucial for estimating their vulnerability to predicted changes. Environmental conditions vary with elevation, which might influence plastic responses and affect selection pressures that lead to local adaptation. Thus, local adaptation and phenotypic plasticity among low and high elevation plant populations in response to climate, soil and other factors associated with elevational gradients might underlie different responses of these populations to climate warming. Using a transplant experiment along an elevational gradient, we investigated reproductive phenology, growth and reproduction of the nutrient-poor grassland species Ranunculus bulbosus, Trifolium montanum and Briza media. Seeds were collected from low and high elevation source populations across the Swiss Alps and grown in nine common gardens at three different elevations with two different soil depths. Despite genetic differentiation in some traits, the results revealed no indication of local adaptation to the elevation of population origin. Reproductive phenology was advanced at lower elevation in low and high elevation populations of all three species. Growth and reproduction of T. montanum and B. media were hardly affected by garden elevation and soil depth. In R. bulbosus, however, growth decreased and reproductive investment increased at higher elevation. Furthermore, soil depth influenced growth and reproduction of low elevation R. bulbosus populations. We found no evidence for local adaptation to elevation of origin and hardly any differences in the responses of low and high elevation populations. However, the consistent advanced reproductive phenology observed in all three species shows that they have the potential to plastically respond to environmental variation. We conclude that populations might not be forced to migrate to higher elevations

  13. Potential changes in disease patterns and pharmaceutical use in response to climate change.

    PubMed

    Redshaw, Clare H; Stahl-Timmins, Will M; Fleming, Lora E; Davidson, Iain; Depledge, Michael H

    2013-01-01

    As climate change alters environmental conditions, the incidence and global patterns of human diseases are changing. These modifications to disease profiles and the effects upon human pharmaceutical usage are discussed. Climate-related environmental changes are associated with a rise in the incidence of chronic diseases already prevalent in the Northern Hemisphere, for example, cardiovascular disease and mental illness, leading to greater use of associated heavily used Western medications. Sufferers of respiratory diseases may exhibit exacerbated symptoms due to altered environmental conditions (e.g., pollen). Respiratory, water-borne, and food-borne toxicants and infections, including those that are vector borne, may become more common in Western countries, central and eastern Asia, and across North America. As new disease threats emerge, substantially higher pharmaceutical use appears inevitable, especially of pharmaceuticals not commonly employed at present (e.g., antiprotozoals). The use of medications for the treatment of general symptoms (e.g., analgesics) will also rise. These developments need to be viewed in the context of other major environmental changes (e.g., industrial chemical pollution, biodiversity loss, reduced water and food security) as well as marked shifts in human demographics, including aging of the population. To identify, prevent, mitigate, and adapt to potential threats, one needs to be aware of the major factors underlying changes in the use of pharmaceuticals and their subsequent release, deliberately or unintentionally, into the environment. This review explores the likely consequences of climate change upon the use of medical pharmaceuticals in the Northern Hemisphere. © Clare H. Redshaw, Will M. Stahl-Timmins, Lora E. Fleming, Iain Davidson, and Michael H. Depledge.

  14. Imbedding dynamic responses with imperfect information into static portraits of the regional impact of climate change

    SciTech Connect

    Yohe, G.W. )

    1990-11-01

    It is becoming increasingly clear, at least on a theoretical level, that modelers of the potential impacts of climate change must impose that change upon the world as it will be configured sometime in the future rather than confine their attention to considerations of what would happen to the world as it looks now. Initial baselines which focus on current circumstances are certainly worthwhile points of departure in any study, of course, but the truth is that social, economic, and political systems will evolve as the future unfolds; and careful analysis of that evolution across a globe experiencing changes in its climate must be undertaken, as well. In the vernacular of the analysts' workroom, while it may be interesting to try to see what would happen to dumb farmers'' who continue to do things as they always have regardless of what happens, it is critically important to evaluate the need for any sort of policy response to climate change in a world of smart farmers'' who will have observed the ramifications of climate change and responded in their own best interest. 9 refs., 2 figs.

  15. Climate change, phenological shifts, eco-evolutionary responses and population viability: toward a unifying predictive approach.

    PubMed

    Jenouvrier, Stéphanie; Visser, Marcel E

    2011-11-01

    The debate on emission targets of greenhouse gasses designed to limit global climate change has to take into account the ecological consequences. One of the clearest ecological consequences is shifts in phenology. Linking these shifts to changes in population viability under various greenhouse gasses emission scenarios requires a unifying framework. We propose a box-in-a-box modeling approach that couples population models to phenological change. This approach unifies population modeling with both ecological responses to climate change as well as evolutionary processes. We advocate a mechanistic embedded correlative approach, where the link from genes to population is established using a periodic matrix population model. This periodic model has several major advantages: (1) it can include complex seasonal behaviors allowing an easy link with phenological shifts; (2) it provides the structure of the population at each phase, including the distribution of genotypes and phenotypes, allowing a link with evolutionary processes; and (3) it can incorporate the effect of climate at different time periods. We believe that the way climatologists have approached the problem, using atmosphere-ocean coupled circulation models in which components are gradually included and linked to each other, can provide a valuable example to ecologists. We hope that ecologists will take up this challenge and that our preliminary modeling framework will stimulate research toward a unifying predictive model of the ecological consequences of climate change.

  16. Response of Hofsjökull and southern Vatnajökull, Iceland, to climate change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Aã°Algeirsdóttir, G.; Jóhannesson, T.; BjöRnsson, H.; PáLsson, F.; Sigurã°Sson, O.

    2006-09-01

    (Possible changes in glacier mass balance are among the most important consequences of future climate change with both local and global implications, such as changes in the discharge of glacial rivers, changes in the vertical stratification in the upper layers of the Arctic Ocean, and a rise in global sea level. The response of the Hofsjökull and southern Vatnajökull ice caps in Iceland to climate change is analyzed with a vertically integrated, finite difference ice flow model coupled with a degree day mass balance model. Transient climate change simulations are forced with a climate change scenario for the Nordic countries, which for Iceland, specifies a warming rate of 0.15°C per decade in midsummer and 0.3°C per decade in midwinter, with a sinusoidal variation through the year starting from the baseline period 1981-2000. Precipitation is either held steady or is increased at 5% per °C of warming. Modeled ice volume is reduced by half within 100-150 years. About 2030, annual average runoff from the area that is presently covered by ice is projected to have increased by approximately 0.7 m yr-1 for Hofsjökull and by 1.4 m yr-1 for southern Vatnajökull. The sensitivity of the mass balance of the ice caps to climate change was found to be in the range 0.4-0.8 mw.e. yr-1 °C-1 for Hofsjökull and 0.8-1.3 mw.e. yr-1 °C-1 for southern Vatnajökull. The sensitivity remained within these ranges more than 150 years into the future.)

  17. The spatial pattern of leaf phenology and its response to climate change in China.

    PubMed

    Dai, Junhu; Wang, Huanjiong; Ge, Quansheng

    2014-05-01

    Leaf phenology has been shown to be one of the most important indicators of the effects of climate change on biological systems. Few such studies have, however, been published detailing the relationship between phenology and climate change in Asian contexts. With the aim of quantifying species' phenological responsiveness to temperature and deepening understandings of spatial patterns of phenological and climate change in China, this study analyzes the first leaf date (FLD) and the leaf coloring date (LCD) from datasets of four woody plant species, Robinia pseudoacacia, Ulmus pumila, Salix babylonica, and Melia azedarach, collected from 1963 to 2009 at 47 Chinese Phenological Observation Network (CPON) stations spread across China (from 21° to 50° N). The results of this study show that changes in temperatures in the range of 39-43 days preceding the date of FLD of these plants affected annual variations in FLD, while annual variations in temperature in the range of 71-85 days preceding LCD of these plants affected the date of LCD. Average temperature sensitivity of FLD and LCD for these plants was -3.93 to 3.30 days °C(-1) and 2.11 to 4.43 days °C⁻¹, respectively. Temperature sensitivity of FLD was found to be stronger at lower latitudes or altitude as well as in more continental climates, while the response of LCD showed no consistent pattern. Within the context of significant warming across China during the study period, FLD was found to have advanced by 5.44 days from 1960 to 2009; over the same period, LCD was found to have been delayed by 4.56 days. These findings indicate that the length of the growing season of the four plant species studied was extended by a total of 10.00 days from 1960 to 2009. They also indicate that phenological response to climate is highly heterogeneous spatially.

  18. The spatial pattern of leaf phenology and its response to climate change in China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dai, Junhu; Wang, Huanjiong; Ge, Quansheng

    2014-05-01

    Leaf phenology has been shown to be one of the most important indicators of the effects of climate change on biological systems. Few such studies have, however, been published detailing the relationship between phenology and climate change in Asian contexts. With the aim of quantifying species' phenological responsiveness to temperature and deepening understandings of spatial patterns of phenological and climate change in China, this study analyzes the first leaf date (FLD) and the leaf coloring date (LCD) from datasets of four woody plant species, Robinia pseudoacacia, Ulmus pumila, Salix babylonica, and Melia azedarach, collected from 1963 to 2009 at 47 Chinese Phenological Observation Network (CPON) stations spread across China (from 21° to 50° N). The results of this study show that changes in temperatures in the range of 39-43 days preceding the date of FLD of these plants affected annual variations in FLD, while annual variations in temperature in the range of 71-85 days preceding LCD of these plants affected the date of LCD. Average temperature sensitivity of FLD and LCD for these plants was -3.93 to 3.30 days °C-1 and 2.11 to 4.43 days °C-1, respectively. Temperature sensitivity of FLD was found to be stronger at lower latitudes or altitude as well as in more continental climates, while the response of LCD showed no consistent pattern. Within the context of significant warming across China during the study period, FLD was found to have advanced by 5.44 days from 1960 to 2009; over the same period, LCD was found to have been delayed by 4.56 days. These findings indicate that the length of the growing season of the four plant species studied was extended by a total of 10.00 days from 1960 to 2009. They also indicate that phenological response to climate is highly heterogeneous spatially.

  19. How long can fisheries management delay action in response to ecosystem and climate change?

    PubMed

    Brown, Christopher J; Fulton, Elizabeth A; Possingham, Hugh P; Richardson, Anthony J

    2012-01-01

    Sustainable management of fisheries is often compromised by management delaying implementation of regulations that reduce harvest, in order to maintain higher catches in the short-term. Decreases or increases in fish population growth rate driven by environmental change, including ecosystem and climate change, affect the harvest that can be taken sustainably. If not acted on rapidly, environmental change could result in unsustainable fishing or missed opportunity for higher catches. Using simulation models of harvested fish populations influenced by environmental change, we explore how long fisheries managers can afford to wait before changing harvest regulations in response to changes in population growth. If environmental change causes population declines, delays greater than five years increase the probability of population collapse. Species with fast and highly variable population growth rates are more susceptible to collapse under delays and should be a priority for revised management where delays occur. Generally, the long-term cost of delay, in terms of lost fishing opportunity, exceeds the short-term benefits of overfishing. Lowering harvest limits and monitoring for environmental change can alleviate the impact of delays; however, these measures may be more costly than reducing delays. We recommend that management systems that allow rapid responses to population growth changes be enacted for fisheries management to adapt to ecosystem and climate change.

  20. Understanding land surface response to changing South Asian monsoon in a warming climate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ramarao, M. V. S.; Krishnan, R.; Sanjay, J.; Sabin, T. P.

    2015-09-01

    Recent studies have drawn attention to a significant weakening trend of the South Asian monsoon circulation and an associated decrease in regional rainfall during the last few decades. While surface temperatures over the region have steadily risen during this period, most of the CMIP (Coupled Model Intercomparison Project) global climate models have difficulties in capturing the observed decrease of monsoon precipitation, thus limiting our understanding of the regional land surface response to monsoonal changes. This problem is investigated by performing two long-term simulation experiments, with and without anthropogenic forcing, using a variable resolution global climate model having high-resolution zooming over the South Asian region. The present results indicate that anthropogenic effects have considerably influenced the recent weakening of the monsoon circulation and decline of precipitation. It is seen that the simulated increase of surface temperature over the Indian region during the post-1950s is accompanied by a significant decrease of monsoon precipitation and soil moisture. Our analysis further reveals that the land surface response to decrease of soil moisture is associated with significant reduction in evapotranspiration over the Indian land region. A future projection, based on the representative concentration pathway 4.5 (RCP4.5) scenario of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), using the same high-resolution model indicates the possibility for detecting the summer-time soil drying signal over the Indian region during the 21st century in response to climate change. Given that these monsoon hydrological changes have profound socio-economic implications the present findings provide deeper insights and enhance our understanding of the regional land surface response to the changing South Asian monsoon. While this study is based on a single model realization, it is highly desirable to have multiple realizations to establish the robustness

  1. Understanding land surface response to changing South Asian monsoon in a warming climate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ramarao, M. V. S.; Krishnan, R.; Sanjay, J.; Sabin, T. P.

    2015-05-01

    Recent studies have drawn attention to a significant weakening trend of the South Asian monsoon circulation and an associated decrease in regional rainfall during the last few decades. While surface temperatures over the region have steadily risen during this period, most of the CMIP (Coupled Model Intercomparison Project) global climate models have difficulties in capturing the observed decrease of monsoon precipitation, thus limiting our understanding of the regional land surface response to monsoonal changes. This problem is investigated by performing two long-term simulation experiments, with and without anthropogenic forcing, using a variable resolution global climate model having high-resolution zooming over the South Asian region. The present results indicate that anthropogenic effects have considerably influenced the recent weakening of the monsoon circulation and decline of precipitation. It is seen that the simulated increase of surface temperature over the Indian region during the post-1950s is accompanied by a significant decrease of monsoon precipitation and soil moisture. Our analysis further reveals that the land surface response to decrease of soil moisture is associated with significant reduction in evapotranspiration over the Indian land region. A future projection, based on the representative concentration pathway 4.5 (RCP4.5) scenario of the Intergovernmental panel on Climate Change (IPCC), using the same high-resolution model indicates the possibility for detecting the summer-time soil drying signal over the Indian region during the 21st century, in response to climate change. While these monsoon hydrological changes have profound socioeconomic implications, the robustness of the high-resolution simulations provides deeper insights and enhances our understanding of the regional land surface response to the changing South Asian monsoon.

  2. The response of glacier melt runoff to climate change: a glacierized catchment in Tieshan Mountains

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fang, Gonghuan; Yang, Jing; Chen, Yaning; Li, Zhi

    2017-04-01

    Water resources are sensitive to climate change for the arid inland basins, whose water originates largely from the glacierized mountains. In this study, we simulated the glacial process and then analyzed its response to future climate change in a typical Tieshan Mountains watershed - Aksu watershed. To simulate glacial process, we developed a glacial module into a semi-distributed hydrologic model and then performed multi-objective sensitivity analysis and optimization by combining observed flow data and water isotope data. The calibrated model was then used to analyze the response to climate change through future climate forcing obtained by applying BMA (Bayesian Model Averaging) technique to an ensemble of one RCM and 21-GCM simulations from the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project Phase 5 (CMIP5) under RCP4.5 and RCP8.5. Results indicated that the parameters related to groundwater flow and its interaction with surface water flow are the most sensitive parameters, and glacier-related parameters are also sensitive, indicating a large part of the streamflow is recharged by glacier melt water. Runoff will overall increase in the near future but will decrease at the end of the 21st century. The combined use of different data sources sheds some sights on hydrological modelling in the Tienshan mountainous.

  3. Global response of glacier runoff to twenty-first century climate change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bliss, Andrew; Hock, Regine; Radić, Valentina

    2014-04-01

    The hydrology of many important river systems in the world is influenced by the presence of glaciers in their upper reaches. We assess the global-scale response of glacier runoff to climate change, where glacier runoff is defined as all melt and rain water that runs off the glacierized area without refreezing. With an elevation-dependent glacier mass balance model, we project monthly glacier runoff for all mountain glaciers and ice caps outside Antarctica until 2100 using temperature and precipitation scenarios from 14 global climate models. We aggregate results for 18 glacierized regions. Despite continuous glacier net mass loss in all regions, trends in annual glacier runoff differ significantly among regions depending on the balance between increased glacier melt and reduction in glacier storage as glaciers shrink. While most regions show significant negative runoff trends, some regions exhibit steady increases in runoff (Canadian and Russian Arctic), or increases followed by decreases (Svalbard and Iceland). Annual glacier runoff is dominated by melt in most regions, but rain is a major contributor in the monsoon-affected regions of Asia and maritime regions such as New Zealand and Iceland. Annual net glacier mass loss dominates total glacier melt especially in some high-latitude regions, while seasonal melt is dominant in wetter climate regimes. Our results highlight the variety of glacier runoff responses to climate change and the need to include glacier net mass loss in assessments of future hydrological change.

  4. Rapid Vegetational Change in Coastal North America: The Response to Climate Since the LGM

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Peteet, Dorothy; Kneller, Margaret

    1999-01-01

    The late-glacial interval provided rapid shifts in climate which are mirrored by dramatic vegetational changes in North America. Through a transect of lake and mire sites from Connecticut to Virginia on the east coast and Kodiak Island on the western coast, we trace the warming following the LGM with the response of forests and tundra. A brief cold reversal in Virginia is seen from 12,260 to 12,200. The subsequent longer and extreme Younger Dryas event is marked in the southern New England - New Jersey region by dramatic boreal and deciduous forest changes. In the southeastern US, forests also change rapidly, with hemlock forest expansion suggesting increased moisture. In Kodiak Island, the warm, moist tundra of the Bolling/Allerod is replaced by colder, windswept Empetrum-dominated tundra during the Younger Dryas. The Pleistocene/Holocene shift in vegetation is remarkably pronounced in eastern North America as well as the Alaskan coastline. Response time of vegetation to climate change appears to be on the order of decades throughout these coastal locations, probably because of the proximity of sites to important ecotonal boundaries, and the magnitude of the events. Even in Virginia's Holocene record, a cold reversal inferred from increases in spruce and fir is noted at 7500 C14 yr BP. This response of the forests to a short-lived cooling shows the sensitivity of the biosphere to a rapid climate shifts.

  5. Rapid Vegetational Change in Coastal North America: The Response to Climate Since the LGM

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Peteet, Dorothy; Kneller, Margaret

    1999-01-01

    The late-glacial interval provided rapid shifts in climate which are mirrored by dramatic vegetational changes in North America. Through a transect of lake and mire sites from Connecticut to Virginia on the east coast and Kodiak Island on the western coast, we trace the warming following the LGM with the response of forests and tundra. A brief cold reversal in Virginia is seen from 12,260 to 12,200. The subsequent longer and extreme Younger Dryas event is marked in the southern New England - New Jersey region by dramatic boreal and deciduous forest changes. In the southeastern US, forests also change rapidly, with hemlock forest expansion suggesting increased moisture. In Kodiak Island, the warm, moist tundra of the Bolling/Allerod is replaced by colder, windswept Empetrum-dominated tundra during the Younger Dryas. The Pleistocene/Holocene shift in vegetation is remarkably pronounced in eastern North America as well as the Alaskan coastline. Response time of vegetation to climate change appears to be on the order of decades throughout these coastal locations, probably because of the proximity of sites to important ecotonal boundaries, and the magnitude of the events. Even in Virginia's Holocene record, a cold reversal inferred from increases in spruce and fir is noted at 7500 C14 yr BP. This response of the forests to a short-lived cooling shows the sensitivity of the biosphere to a rapid climate shifts.

  6. Assessing the changes of return periods of floods and droughts in response to climate change using a hydrologic modeling approach

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chien, H.

    2015-12-01

    When accessing the impacts of climate change on water resources, it is important to estimate changes in the frequencies and magnitudes of projected floods and droughts in response to climate change, considering that most disasters result from these hydrological extremes. The objective of this study is to estimate the changes of return periods of floods and droughts based on projected future streamflows in the Illinois River Watershed according to various climate change models. Future streamflows are simulated by combining data from 59 climate model scenarios with the Soil and Water Assessment Tool (SWAT) hydrologic model. Subsequently, a Gumbel distribution (Extreme Value Type I) is fitted to the annual maximum simulated streamflow to derive the number of return periods of future hydrological extremes. The annual minimum 7-day average streamflow has been adopted for drought analysis. A Weibull distribution (Extreme Value Type Ш) is used to analyze the return periods of low flows. The 10-year and 100-year return periods of floods and droughts from 2020 to 2049 and from 2070 to 2099 are analyzed in comparison to streamflows from 1975 to 2004. Results indicate that average streamflow predicted from 33 (2020-2049) and 29 (2070-2099) climate scenarios are expected to decrease. The majority of the 10-year and 100-year return periods of floods in 2020-2049 and 2070-2099 increase; however 10-year and 100-year return periods for droughts tend to decrease.

  7. Effects of global climate change on the US forest sector: response functions derived from a dynamic resource and market simulator.

    Treesearch

    Bruce A. McCarl; Darius M. Adams; Ralph J. Alig; Diana Burton; Chi-Chung. Chen

    2000-01-01

    A multiperiod, regional, mathematical programming economic model is used to evaluate the potential economic impacts of global climatic change on the US forest sector. A wide range of scenarios for the biological response of forests to climate change are developed, ranging from small to large changes in forest growth rates. These scenarios are simulated in the economic...

  8. Height-growth response to climatic changes differs among populations of Douglas-fir: A novel analysis of historic data

    Treesearch

    Laura P. Leites; Andrew P. Robinson; Gerald E. Rehfeldt; John D. Marshall; Nicholas L. Crookston

    2012-01-01

    Projected climate change will affect existing forests, as substantial changes are predicted to occur during their life spans. Species that have ample intraspecific genetic differentiation, such as Douglas-fir (Pseudotsuga menziesii (Mirb.) Franco), are expected to display population-specific growth responses to climate change. Using a mixed-effects modeling approach,...

  9. Biomass allocation of montane and desert Pondersoa Pine: An analog for response to climate change

    SciTech Connect

    Callaway, R.M.; DeLucia, E.H. ); Schlesinger, W.H. )

    1994-07-01

    Aboveground biomass allocation of Pinus ponderosa on hydrothermally altered andesite in montane and desert climates was measured. Trees from montane climates had higher leaf mass per unit cross-sectional area of sapwood than trees from desert climates, suggesting a function response to differences in climate. Results also indicate that sapwood mass:leaf mass ratios of P. ponderosa may increase [approx]50% with a 5[degrees]C change in mean growing-season temperature. High proportional allocation of biomass to sapwood may improve water relations of P. ponderosa, but because sapwood contains living parenchyma, respiratory costs may be high. Simulated montane trees were 46-52% taller than desert trees, and montane trees 10 cm in dbh had twice the total aboveground mass of desert counterparts. Simulated 50-cm montane and desert trees were almost identical in total mass, even though the montane tree was 46% taller. The predicted proportion of biomass allocated to bole sapwood increased with size for both montane and desert models; however, the 50-cm desert model contained 8% more total sapwood mass than the taller montane model. Biomass of primary and secondary branches differed considerably. The 50-cm desert model had twice as much biomass in primary branches, whereas the montane model had 3 times more biomass in secondary branches than the desert model. For 10-cm trees of the desert and montane models 29 and 33% of the biomass were leaves, respectively. In larger trees, leaf allocation decreased to 5 and 7% for desert and montane models, respectively. The effects of climate on biomass allocation such as reported here, and corresponding changes in whole-plant assimilation rates must be incorporated into growth-response models used to predict future fluctuations in forest productivity due to global climate change. 35 refs., 3 figs., 3 tabs.

  10. Agriculture: Climate Change

    EPA Pesticide Factsheets

    Climate change affects agricultural producers because agriculture and fisheries depend on specific climate conditions. Temperature changes can cause crop planting dates to shift. Droughts and floods due to climate change may hinder farming practices.

  11. Simulated annual changes in plant functional types and their responses to climate change on the northern Tibetan Plateau

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cuo, Lan; Zhang, Yongxin; Piao, Shilong; Gao, Yanhong

    2016-06-01

    Changes in plant functional types (PFTs) have important implications for both climate and water resources. Still, little is known about whether and how PFTs have changed over the past decades on the northern Tibetan Plateau (NTP) where several of the top largest rivers in the world are originated. Also, the relative importance of atmospheric conditions vs. soil physical conditions in affecting PFTs is unknown on the NTP. In this study, we used the improved Lund-Potsdam-Jena Dynamic Global Vegetation Model to investigate PFT changes through examining the changes in foliar projective coverages (FPCs) during 1957-2009 and their responses to changes in root zone soil temperature, soil moisture, air temperature, precipitation and CO2 concentrations. The results show spatially heterogeneous changes in FPCs across the NTP during 1957-2009, with 34 % (13 %) of the region showing increasing (decreasing) trends. Dominant drivers responsible for the observed FPC changes vary with regions and vegetation types, but overall, precipitation is the major factor in determining FPC changes on the NTP with positive impacts. Soil temperature increase exhibits small but negative impacts on FPCs. Different responses of individual FPCs to regionally varying climate change result in spatially heterogeneous patterns of vegetation changes on the NTP. The implication of the study is that fresh water resources in one of the world's largest and most important headwater basins and the onset and intensity of Asian monsoon circulations could be affected because of the changes in FPCs on the NTP.

  12. Hydrologic response to forest cover changes following a Mountain Pine Beetle outbreak in the context of a changing climate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Moore, Dan; Jost, Georg; Nelson, Harry; Smith, Russell

    2013-04-01

    Over the last 15 years, there has been extensive mortality of pine forests in western North America associated with an outbreak of Mountain Pine Beetle, often followed by salvage logging. The objective of this study was to quantify the separate and combined effects of forest recovery and climate change over the 21st century on catchment hydrology in the San Jose watershed, located in the semi-arid Interior Plateau of British Columbia. Forest cover changes were simulated using a dynamic spatial model that uses a decentralized planning approach. We implemented management strategies representing current timber management objectives around achieving targeted harvest levels and incorporating existing management constraints under two different scenarios, one with no climate change and one under climate change, using climate-adjusted growth and yield curves. In addition, higher rates of fire disturbance were modelled under climate change. Under climate change, while productivity improves for some species (mainly Douglas-fir on better quality sites), on drier and poorer quality sites most species, especially Lodgepole Pine, become significantly less productive, and stocking is reduced to the point that those sites transition into grasslands. The combined effect of initial age classes (where the forest has been severely impacted by MPB), increased fire, and reduced stocking results in a greater proportion of the forest in younger age classes compared to a "Business As Usual" scenario with no climate change. The hydrologic responses to changes in vegetation cover and climate were evaluated with the flexible Hydrology Emulator and Modelling Platform (HEMP) developed at the University of British Columbia. HEMP allows a flexible discretization of the landscape. Water is moved vertically within landscape units by processes such as precipitation, canopy interception and soil infiltration, and routed laterally between units as a function of local soil and groundwater storage. The

  13. Streamflow variability response to climate change and cascade dams development in a coastal China watershed

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Zhenyu; Huang, Jinliang; Huang, Yaling; Hong, Huasheng

    2015-12-01

    Coastal watersheds and their changes in streamflow have become a particular concern in hydrology and water resource management. The ecohydrologic analysis and environmental flow component were coupled in this study to assess the streamflow variability response to climate change and human activities in the Jiulong River Watershed (JRW). Results showed that human activities were the main contributing factors to decreasing streamflow in the JRW. Available water resources decreased by 4.34% and 3.17% in the North River and West River, respectively. In addition to climate change, watershed characteristics partly influenced the streamflow quantity and regime in the North River and West River. The cascade dam construction along the mainstream of the JRW, which made the water bodies from free-flowing rivers to cascade lakes, altered the patterns of streamflow regime in terms of low and high flow events, as well as the flood pattern. The monthly low flow increased in almost all seasons; the high flow pulses homogenized; and little variation in the flood pattern was detected within the JRW. We present a case study in a southeast coastal watershed to illustrate a combined approach that could facilitate to evaluate the streamflow variability in terms of streamflow quantity and regime response to climate change and cascade dams development in two adjacent rivers within the JRW, which could hopefully provide water managers on the strategies to fight the effect of environmental changes on watershed ecosystem.

  14. Changes in the taste and textural attributes of apples in response to climate change.

    PubMed

    Sugiura, Toshihiko; Ogawa, Hidekazu; Fukuda, Noriaki; Moriguchi, Takaya

    2013-01-01

    The effects of climate change on the taste and textural attributes of foods remain largely unknown, despite much public interest. On the basis of 30-40 years of records, we provide evidence that the taste and textural attributes of apples have changed as a result of recent global warming. Decreases in both acid concentration, fruit firmness and watercore development were observed regardless of the maturity index used for harvest date (e.g., calendar date, number of days after full bloom, peel colour and starch concentration), whereas in some cases the soluble-solids concentration increased; all such changes may have resulted from earlier blooming and higher temperatures during the maturation period. These results suggest that the qualities of apples in the market are undergoing long-term changes.

  15. Changes in the taste and textural attributes of apples in response to climate change

    PubMed Central

    Sugiura, Toshihiko; Ogawa, Hidekazu; Fukuda, Noriaki; Moriguchi, Takaya

    2013-01-01

    The effects of climate change on the taste and textural attributes of foods remain largely unknown, despite much public interest. On the basis of 30–40 years of records, we provide evidence that the taste and textural attributes of apples have changed as a result of recent global warming. Decreases in both acid concentration, fruit firmness and watercore development were observed regardless of the maturity index used for harvest date (e.g., calendar date, number of days after full bloom, peel colour and starch concentration), whereas in some cases the soluble-solids concentration increased; all such changes may have resulted from earlier blooming and higher temperatures during the maturation period. These results suggest that the qualities of apples in the market are undergoing long-term changes. PMID:23948740

  16. How does complex terrain influence responses of carbon and water cycle processes to climate variability and climate change? (Invited)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bond, B. J.; Peterson, K.; McKane, R.; Lajtha, K.; Quandt, D. J.; Allen, S. T.; Sell, S.; Daly, C.; Harmon, M. E.; Johnson, S. L.; Spies, T.; Sollins, P.; Abdelnour, A. G.; Stieglitz, M.

    2010-12-01

    We are pursuing the ambitious goal of understanding how complex terrain influences the responses of carbon and water cycle processes to climate variability and climate change. Our studies take place in H.J. Andrews Experimental Forest, an LTER (Long Term Ecological Research) site situated in Oregon’s central-western Cascade Range. Decades of long-term measurements and intensive research have revealed influences of topography on vegetation patterns, disturbance history, and hydrology. More recent research has shown surprising interactions between microclimates and synoptic weather patterns due to cold air drainage and pooling in mountain valleys. Using these data and insights, in addition to a recent LiDAR (Light Detection and Ranging) reconnaissance and a small sensor network, we are employing process-based models, including “SPA” (Soil-Plant-Atmosphere, developed by Mathew Williams of the University of Edinburgh), and “VELMA” (Visualizing Ecosystems for Land Management Alternatives, developed by Marc Stieglitz and colleagues of the Georgia Institute of Technology) to focus on two important features of mountainous landscapes: heterogeneity (both spatial and temporal) and connectivity (atmosphere-canopy-hillslope-stream). Our research questions include: 1) Do fine-scale spatial and temporal heterogeneity result in emergent properties at the basin scale, and if so, what are they? 2) How does connectivity across ecosystem components affect system responses to climate variability and change? Initial results show that for environmental drivers that elicit non-linear ecosystem responses on the plot scale, such as solar radiation, soil depth and soil water content, fine-scale spatial heterogeneity may produce unexpected emergent properties at larger scales. The results from such modeling experiments are necessarily a function of the supporting algorithms. However, comparisons based on models such as SPA and VELMA that operate at much different spatial scales

  17. Methods for Assessing Uncertainties in Climate Change, Impacts and Responses (Invited)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Manning, M. R.; Swart, R.

    2009-12-01

    Assessing the scientific uncertainties or confidence levels for the many different aspects of climate change is particularly important because of the seriousness of potential impacts and the magnitude of economic and political responses that are needed to mitigate climate change effectively. This has made the treatment of uncertainty and confidence a key feature in the assessments carried out by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). Because climate change is very much a cross-disciplinary area of science, adequately dealing with uncertainties requires recognition of their wide range and different perspectives on assessing and communicating those uncertainties. The structural differences that exist across disciplines are often embedded deeply in the corresponding literature that is used as the basis for an IPCC assessment. The assessment of climate change science by the IPCC has from its outset tried to report the levels of confidence and uncertainty in the degree of understanding in both the underlying multi-disciplinary science and in projections for future climate. The growing recognition of the seriousness of this led to the formation of a detailed approach for consistent treatment of uncertainties in the IPCC’s Third Assessment Report (TAR) [Moss and Schneider, 2000]. However, in completing the TAR there remained some systematic differences between the disciplines raising concerns about the level of consistency. So further consideration of a systematic approach to uncertainties was undertaken for the Fourth Assessment Report (AR4). The basis for the approach used in the AR4 was developed at an expert meeting of scientists representing many different disciplines. This led to the introduction of a broader way of addressing uncertainties in the AR4 [Manning et al., 2004] which was further refined by lengthy discussions among many IPCC Lead Authors, for over a year, resulting in a short summary of a standard approach to be followed for that

  18. Changes in tree functional composition amplify the response of forest biomass to climate variability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lichstein, Jeremy; Zhang, Tao; Niinemets, Ulo; Sheffield, Justin

    2017-04-01

    The response of forest carbon storage to climate change is highly uncertain, contributing substantially to the divergence among global climate model projections. Numerous studies have documented responses of forest ecosystems to climate change and variability, including drought-induced increases in tree mortality rates. However, the sensitivity of forests to climate variability - in terms of both biomass carbon storage and functional components of tree species composition - has yet to be quantified across a large region using systematically sampled data. Here, we combine systematic forest inventories across the eastern USA with a species-level drought-tolerance index, derived from a meta-analysis of published literature, to quantify changes in forest biomass and community-mean-drought-tolerance in one-degree grid cells from the 1980s to 2000s. We show that forest biomass responds to decadal-scale changes in water deficit and that this biomass response is amplified by concurrent changes in community-mean-drought-tolerance. The amplification of the direct effects of water stress on biomass occurs because water stress tends to induce a shift in tree species composition towards more drought-tolerant but lower-biomass species. Multiple plant functional traits are correlated with the above species-level drought-tolerance index, and likely contribute to the decrease in biomass with increasing drought-tolerance. These traits include wood density and P50 (the xylem water potential at which a plant loses 50% of its hydraulic conductivity). Simulations with a trait- and competition-based dynamic global vegetation model suggest that species differences in plant carbon allocation to wood, leaves, and fine roots also likely contribute to the observed decrease in biomass with increasing drought-tolerance, because competition drives plants to over-invest in fine roots when water is limiting. Thus, the most competitive species under dry conditions have greater root allocation but

  19. Adaptive Governance, Uncertainty, and Risk: Policy Framing and Responses to Climate Change, Drought, and Flood.

    PubMed

    Hurlbert, Margot; Gupta, Joyeeta

    2016-02-01

    As climate change impacts result in more extreme events (such as droughts and floods), the need to understand which policies facilitate effective climate change adaptation becomes crucial. Hence, this article answers the question: How do governments and policymakers frame policy in relation to climate change, droughts, and floods and what governance structures facilitate adaptation? This research interrogates and analyzes through content analysis, supplemented by semi-structured qualitative interviews, the policy response to climate change, drought, and flood in relation to agricultural producers in four case studies in river basins in Chile, Argentina, and Canada. First, an epistemological explanation of risk and uncertainty underscores a brief literature review of adaptive governance, followed by policy framing in relation to risk and uncertainty, and an analytical model is developed. Pertinent findings of the four cases are recounted, followed by a comparative analysis. In conclusion, recommendations are made to improve policies and expand adaptive governance to better account for uncertainty and risk. This article is innovative in that it proposes an expanded model of adaptive governance in relation to "risk" that can help bridge the barrier of uncertainty in science and policy. © 2015 Society for Risk Analysis.

  20. Persistence and diversification of the Holarctic shrew, Sorex tundrensis (Family Soricidae), in response to climate change

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hope, A.G.; Waltari, Eric; Fedorov, V.B.; Goropashnaya, A.V.; Talbot, S.L.; Cook, J.A.

    2011-01-01

    Environmental processes govern demography, species movements, community turnover and diversification and yet in many respects these dynamics are still poorly understood at high latitudes. We investigate the combined effects of climate change and geography through time for a widespread Holarctic shrew, Sorex tundrensis. We include a comprehensive suite of closely related outgroup taxa and three independent loci to explore phylogeographic structure and historical demography. We then explore the implications of these findings for other members of boreal communities. The tundra shrew and its sister species, the Tien Shan shrew (Sorex asper), exhibit strong geographic population structure across Siberia and into Beringia illustrating local centres of endemism that correspond to Late Pleistocene refugia. Ecological niche predictions for both current and historical distributions indicate a model of persistence through time despite dramatic climate change. Species tree estimation under a coalescent process suggests that isolation between populations has been maintained across timeframes deeper than the periodicity of Pleistocene glacial cycling. That some species such as the tundra shrew have a history of persistence largely independent of changing climate, whereas other boreal species shifted their ranges in response to climate change, highlights the dynamic processes of community assembly at high latitudes. ?? 2011 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.